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1. The Position of Linguistics in the Post-war World 

(Prof. ALF SOMMERFELT) ..... 1 

2. The Reduced Prefixes Jcs- and dz/d-, and Metathesis 

in Greek (S. E. MANN) 11 

3. De 1'emploi de Vaoriste en grec moderne (A. 

MIRAMBEL) ....... 15 

4. The Disintegration of the Avestic Studies (W. B. 

HENNING) ....... 40 

Annual Report for 1941 ...... 57 

The Philological Society's Balance Sheet, 1941 . . 58 
List of Members, corrected to January, 1944 . . i-viii 




LINGUISTIC research is usually considered to be of little 
importance to the problems of the day. The public looks upon 
linguistics as something rather abstruse out of which it is 
possible to glean some more or less amusing details on the 
" origin " of words and names. Sometimes the linguists 
themselves have tried to justify their existence, but their 
arguments are often curiously lame and empty. In a recent 
and important book on general linguistics the main merit 
of our science is said to be that it has enabled people to learn 
foreign languages more correctly. If that were true we ought 
to cease most of our activities keeping up only the study of 
practical phonetics. 

The reason for this regrettable state of affairs is that the 
knowledge of the real character of language has not yet 
penetrated to the public. If I remember right, Meillet's famous 
article on the nature of the change of meaning appeared in 
I'Annee Sociologique in 1906. In this article he showed, in 
his lucid way, how language is social in its character and 
pointed out some of the consequences this fact has for our 
methods and theories. Many linguists agree that language 
is a social phenomenon. From the sociologists Meillet's point 
of view has received powerful support. It is a principle 
accepted by very many sociologists that the different parts 
of a social system must be seen in relation to each other. 
But still the old biological view lingers on, especially among 
German linguistic scholars who have been very reluctant to 
accept any general ideas from abroad. This fact has had 
very serious consequences for our science. It has been made 
to play a part in politics, its results having been perverted 
by the theoreticians of the German National Socialist party. 

Many German linguists were strong nationalists long before 
this war. Scholars of the smaller Teutonic nations were often 

PHILO. TRANS. 1942. B 


made to feel that they ought to follow their lead and write 
in German. Even such a prominent scholar as Meyer-Liibke 
declared in 1928 to the Norwegian professor J. Sverdrup at 
the first congress of linguists at the Hague in 1928, that the 
interest which the Norwegian linguists took in the methods 
of Meillet's group would be greatly detrimental to Norwegian 
scholarship. These views were shared by many German 
linguists, Jews and " Aryans " alike I could give many 
instances. They may seem trivial but they have a deep 
significance. It is the nationalist views of German linguists, 
prehistorians, and anthropologists which have made the 
success of the racial doctrine possible. This is a matter which 
we cannot ignore and it will be our duty after the war to see 
that the racial doctrine is not only exposed but also that the 
true results of linguistic and prehistoric studies are made 
known to a wider public. 

The racial doctrine in its main traits is well known, but it 
is not generally realized how far the perversion of the results 
of linguistic and prehistoric studies goes. Let me try to give 
a synthesis of ideas found in publications both by scholars 
and by popularizers, stripped of the mystic garment in which 
especially Nazi writers usually clothe their ideas. 

According to the views of the German scholars and poets 
during the romantic period the German language had a special 
virtue. Very early the German language came to be the 
centre of German nationalism. Already Fichte had in his 
fourth speech to the German people, before the birth of 
comparative philology in 1816, exalted the German language 
which had remained " alive " while the other Teutonic 
languages were in reality " dead ". In fact German is not, 
as is known, the most original of the Teutonic languages 
(it is reported from Norway that my friend and colleague 
Professor Marstrander was arrested because he had said in 
a lecture that German phonetics had retained less of the 
old system than the other Teutonic languages). Not only is 
German thought to be the main Teutonic language. Many 
Germans regard the other Teutonic-speaking peoples, especially 


the Scandinavians and the Dutch, as a kind of Germans. 
Old Norse poetry is published as altdeutsch and the Icelandic 
sagas are regarded as an achievement of the German spirit. 
In reality the Icelandic family sagas are exclusively Icelandic 
and not even the old mother country of the Icelanders, 
Norway, can claim a share in them. And Wagner's famous 
Teutonic pantheon is neither German nor Teutonic. It is 
Norse and probably only Icelandic in its most developed 
form. The Scandinavians have been a distinct unit of tribes 
and, later, peoples since very far back in prehistoric times. 
By the emigration of the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes they 
were isolated from the continental Teutons, Slav immigrants 
having taken the land which the Anglo-Saxons left empty. 

According not only to popular writers but also to many 
German scholars the Teutonic languages are the most original 
representatives of Indo-European. But we know now that 
Teutonic has undergone some sweeping changes which have 
carried the Teutonic type far away from the original Indo- 
European. It is significant that Meillet's book Caractere 
generaux des langues germaniques was regarded as the attempt 
by a French nationalist at belittling the importance of 
Teutonic. I have personally experienced ill-will because 
I translated that brilliant little book into Norwegian. Meillet 
was attacked not only by scholars but also in the German press. 
He was abused and called Ostjude in reality he was a 
Berrichon, the son of a notaire, and, according to Frenchmen 
who know that part of France well, of a type quite common 
among the local farmers there. The idea that Teutonic is of 
particular importance to Indo-European is seen in the irrita- 
tion of Germans at the use of Indo-European instead of Indo- 
Germanic. Gustav Neckel once wrote that the use of Indo- 
European by Scandinavian scholars testified to the anti- 
German bias of these scholars. The nationalist bias of the 
German scholars has been prominent in the discussion of the 
problem of the original habitat of the Indo-European peoples. 
German linguists and prehistorians have placed it in Northern 
Germany along the Baltic Sea and in Southern Scandinavia 


or in Central Germany. Certain German prehistorians are as 
nationalist as the linguists, Kossinna, for instance, illustrated 
one of his books with a picture of Hindenburg who once said 
that German archaeology was eine hervorragend nationale 
Wissenschaft. The question of the Indo-European cradle- 
land is of course a vexed question. Very few unbiassed scholars 
are in favour of placing it in the Baltic lands and the German 
theories have found hardly any followers among Scandinavian 
prehistorians. As an instance of how prehistory is falsified 
to serve political ends I may mention a new prehistorical 
review of which I received the first fasciculus from Germany 
some time before the war. I found in this fasciculus illustra- 
tions of Indo-European skiers running down the steep moun- 
tain sides of Switzerland, like the modern Schuss-immeis in 
the Alps, to the amazement of the Urbevolkerung. The skiers 
were tall young men with flaxen hair, men of a type which 
is fairly common in the great ski-ing contest at Holmenkollen 
near Oslo, but which to my knowledge is very rare in Germany. 
The depicted representatives of the Urbevolkerung were short 
and dark, rather like pictures of alpine Cretins. The skis 
were similar to the newest ski-types which was first made in 
Norway some thirty years ago. In reality there is not the 
slightest evidence that the old Indo-Europeans had skis. 
They may have known the snow-shoe, but the real ski was in 
antiquity used by the northern Scandinavians, the Lapps, 
and the Finns but not by the peoples round the Baltic. 
Ski-ing as a real sport originated in Norway as late as in the 

Thus the Germans regard themselves as the real Indo- 
European people, they have the right to claim the great 
achievements of other Indo-European peoples, especially 
those of the Greek and Roman civilizations, as their own. 
Language and people are identified in a way which was 
general in the early days of our science but which now every 
linguist who is worthy of that name knows is wrong. The 
idea of a mystic bond between a language and its people which 
is so prominent in Wilhelm von Humboldt's philosophy has 


had the most serious consequences in central and south-eastern 
Europe where language is taught to be the all-important 
criterion of nationality. 

Not only prehistory and linguistics but physical 
anthropology have been perverted to serve German 
nationalism. The father of racialism was not a German but, 
curiously enough, a Frenchman, Count de Gobineau. As a 
French aristocrat he deplored the French revolution, thought 
that modern France had declined and found the reason for 
this decline in the disappearance of the Old Nordic and 
Teutonic aristocracy. It was the fair-haired, blue-eyed 
Nordic man who had created the great civilizations, but he did 
not find this man much represented in Germany. In Germany 
as in France inferior races were swallowing up the Nordics. 
The pure Nordics were only to be found in Sweden and 
Norway. De Gobineau's ideas became immensely popular 
in Germany, he gained many followers there, among them 
the naturalized Englishman Houston Stewart Chamberlain, 
and his theories were combined with anti-semitism. 

De Gobineau's ideas have all been disproved by modern 
historians and anthropologists. It is not in any way probable 
that French aristocracy were particularly Nordic towards 
the end of the eighteenth century. In fact towards the end 
of the eighteenth century the overwhelming majority of the 
French nobility were of bourgeois origin. On the other hand 
it has not in any way been proved that the qualities we 
Norwegians may possess are due to our fair hair and blue 
eyes ; the idea seems to me a rather primitive one when 
I remember the story of Samson. Like all peoples the 
Scandinavians are of mixed origin, though the Nordic type 
is more common among them than among the other peoples 
of Europe. Kecent intelligence tests in America have shown 
rather poor results for the pure Nordic type. I do not think 
the reason is a racial one but that the persons tested originated 
from a rural milieu where people have less intellectual 

Thus according to the German theory which is not exclu- 


sively a Nazi theory but which had been put to special use by 
the Nazis, the Germans are the real representatives of the Indo- 
Europeans and the real Nordics because it is also a dogma 
that the people who used the old parent speech were racially 
Nordic. We know, of course, nothing of the racial character- 
istics of the people who used the parent speech because 
absolutely nothing is left of them except languages which 
may have passed on to other peoples just as English has 
been adopted not only by Celtic peoples but also by negro 
tribes. The Nordic man is also called Aryan. The use of this 
term is the outcome of a number of successive errors. As far 
back as 1888 Max Muller declared that it was as wrong to 
speak of an Aryan race as it was to talk of a brachycephalic 
grammar (Biographies of Words and the Home of the Aryans, 
London, 1888). 

German nationalism which has culminated in Nazism 
thus completely perverts the results of modern linguistic, 
prehistoric, and anthropological studies. It talks of race and 
means language. In fact, the sole positive criterion used in 
practice by the Nazis is language. Everybody who speaks 
German is a German, without regard to his anthropological 
type, if he is not of Jewish religion or comes from parents 
or grandparents who belonged to the Jewish faith. Therefore 
a man may be considered a Jew even if he anthropologically 
is a Nordic and he is an " Aryan " though anthropologically 
he may be of one of the types common among the Jews 
the Jews are, of course, not a race, in the Eastern Jews an 
Armenoid element is predominant, in the Western a 
Mediterranean. The absurdity does not seem to worry most 
Germans and it is dangerous for German anthropologists to 
protest against it or even to give a seemingly reasonable 
explanation of it. Not long before the invasion of Norway 
I heard an amusing story about a young German anthropologist 
who tried to prove that after all Gobbels is a Teuton. The 
anthropologist invented a special species of Teutons which 
he called nachgedunkelte Schrumpfgermanen, shrunken Teutons 
whose hair darkens as they grow up. This was too much for 


Gobbels and the unfortunate anthropologist was liquidated 
and his book destroyed. Now I find the same story with a 
slightly different wording in William D. Bayles' book Ccesars 
in Goose Step (London (Jarrolds), 1941, p. 95). The resistance 
and aloofness of the Nordic Norwegians, Danes, and Dutch 
to the German conquerors has resulted in a new development 
of the official racial policy, revealed in a secret circular letter 
which has fallen into the hands of the Kussians (Soviet War 
News, 15th October, 1942). The letter is signed by Martin 
Bormann and Alfred Rosenberg. It orders the German 
authorities in the northern regions to be guided from now on 
by the following principles : 

1. The conquest of areas inhabited by peoples of Germanic 
race, and the contradiction that has arisen within the Germanic 
race between the conquerors and the conquered, have given 
rise to new factors in race policy in the north, demanding 
a reorientation of the programme previously proclaimed by 
the leaders of the German empire. 

2. The conquest brought to light two different elements of 
the " Nordic race " : the German nucleus proper, which has 
preserved " aboriginal Aryan race material " in its integrity, 
and the unstable periphery, which has been affected by the 
disintegrating influence of various " products of racial chaos 
reigning on the borders of the German world ". These include 
the Finns, Mongols, Slavs, Celts, Gauls, Anglo-Saxons, etc. 

3. Germans inhabiting Central Germany are the sole 
representatives of the " healthy Aryan nucleus ". The events 
of 1940-2 confirmed the right of this superior racial element 
to a " leading political and educational role in German space ", 
while the sub-Germans (Unter-Germanen) of the periphery 
who have fallen into the orbit of German conquest, in particular 
the Norwegians, Swedes, Danes, Dutch, Walloons, and others, 
have proved unable to resist " the decline of their racial 
standard and consequently of their state and social 
system ". 

4. This difference being established, it is possible to regard 
the representatives of " the contaminated periphery of the 


German racial circle " as a certain variety of subject men 
(eine Abart des unterworfenen Menschen). 

Some of my readers will probably object : what has all 
this nonsense to do with linguistics and the position of 
linguistics in the post-war world ? Ought not linguists as 
well as other scholars to ignore them and keep aloof from 
politics ? I am afraid such an attitude might be suicidal. 
The racial ideas of the Nordic Man have gained very large 
parts of the German people ; they have been one of Hitler's 
most efficient weapons. They may become a weapon again 
if they are not counteracted. We are going to disarm Germany 
and must also include her spiritual weapons in our dis- 
armament scheme. We can do so with a safe conscience ; 
we have the same duty to exterminate this dangerous nonsense 
as we have to abolish the bloody and savage rites of the 
so-called " uncivilised " peoples. The racial ideas may 
become dangerous also outside Germany. They must therefore 
be countered everywhere. When they did not meet with 
any success in Norway in spite of the fact that some of them 
rather flatter the anthropological types of most of the 
Norwegians the reason is not that the Norwegians knew 
them to be false. The man in the street hardly knows any- 
thing about linguistics, prehistory, and anthropology either 
in Scandinavia or in western Europe or in America. The 
racial theory did not succeed because it was contrary to. the 
political and social ideas of my people ; then, of course, when 
the German invasion came the Norwegians did not only lose 
their liberty, not only were they imprisoned and tortured 
and shamelessly plundered, but they were also able to observe 
that the average German is anthropologically and spiritually 
very different from the real Nordic Man. This war, however, 
is a revolution and we do not know how many of our political 
and social ideals will survive this revolution. After the war 
the racial theories might be turned against the Germans 
and the present mental characteristics of at least a large 
part of the German nation might be explained by their 
language or the shape of many German skulls. 


As linguists it is therefore our duty to make our results 
better known to the general public. We must do so in collabora- 
tion with prehistorians and anthropologists. Certain funda- 
mental facts must be taught in the schools. I do not mean 
that we ought to teach the intricacies of phonetics or com- 
parative philology to other than intending specialists. What 
I want is an elementary exposition of the results of the social 
sciences which would contain some fundamental notions on 
the difference between language and race, on the grouping of 
European languages and their prehistory and on the relations 
between language and civilization. I think the primers some- 
what similar to the excellent sociological primers which were 
used in French schools might serve as models ; but they 
would have to enter more into linguistic and anthropological 
matters than these primers do. I think most pupils would 
be very interested in these matters. From 1924 to the 8th April, 
1940, I gave Norwegian students such a course which is 
compulsory to all students of the Faculty of Letters. I have 
often been given evidence of the popularity of this course. 
In fact the social sciences must have more space in our 
educational system than they have now. One of the reasons 
of the present crisis is that the development of the natural 
and the social sciences has not followed the same pace. Man 
knows much less about himself than about his surroundings. 
This fact has created a dangerous disharmony in modern 

We must be prepared to make our claims heard when the 
peace settlement comes. Now it will be possible to make 
people understand the necessity of education in linguistic 
and anthropological facts because everybody understands 
how easily they can be misused. Linguistic studies have now 
an opportunity which is not likely to return. We may expect 
a great development of our science in certain countries after 
the war. When I except Germany, very important con- 
tributions to general linguistics were made during the years 
which preceded the war ; I may recall the ideas of the 
phonologists, the new interpretation of the grammar of the 


Indo-European parent language, the important linguistic 
atlases in publication and the descriptions of languages of 
hitherto unknown types. The old homeland of linguistics, 
Germany, had already before the war lost its lead. For 
many years the Germans have been speaking of a crisis in 
linguistics. There has not been any outside Germany. And 
now the national socialist educational system has done its 
work. The number of students in the ordinary universities 
and the technical academies sank from 131,000 in 1931 to 
58,000 in 1938 (it was 67,000 in 1910). People from every 
occupied country are able to tell how incredibly far the 
barbarization has gone and a re-education of Germany will 
take a long time. Not much can be expected from eastern 
and southern Europe which have been so savagely devastated, 
but if the same destruction is not carried out in the north 
and the west of the European continent we may hope that 
those countries and the English speaking world will carry 
on the work which was being done so well before the outbreak 
of war. 

Social studies will have to be encouraged after the war if man 
is going to obtain the same control over himself as he has 
obtained over nature. Linguistics have an important place 
in these studies. No society can be properly explained with- 
out the study of its language. The study of languages is the 
clue to the study of mentality. The development of logical 
categories can only be elucidated through the development 
of linguistic categories. 

The linguists must understand that they have a responsibility 
and must not shrink from that responsibility. 



THERE is a mobile prefix Jcs- in Lithuanian is-mirti "to die 
out ", Albanian g-pall, (Greg) sh-pall " to blab out, publish ", 
and Gothic us-dreiban "to drive off". In Slav bases with 
initial gutturals or sibilants this prefix merges with the 
initial to produce x- (s- before front vowels). 

It appears that Jcs- becomes Greek a before original 6A-, 
dh- t gh-, and guh-, and before original &-, d-, g-, and gu-. 
Before original p-, t-, k-, qu-, and s-, and the same sounds 
when derived from aspirates (as in Trevdepos from bh-, rydy 
from dh-), fusion occurs with metathesis. This metathesis 
principle is still at work in Modern Greek. According to 
Professor N. B. Jopson Mod. Greek /tyao> derives from 
Kf$da) ; jSyaAAco from e/c/?aAAa> ; /tyaiW from cifftaiva), etc. 

IE *Jcs -h t (and rfrom dh), also *lcs -f st become a (earlier *ra) 

adrra} " I load ", etc. IE *Jcs-tngio " to weigh down ", 
radical in rdaa a) " I order, array ". This is apparently a 
doublet of *tngh- " press, constrain ", in Icel. pungr " heavy JJ , 
Lith. tingus " slothful ". The word crayTJvrj " drag-net " may 
belong here. 

aa\dcrcra> " I cram ", IE *Jcs-tlkio, root *telk/tlk " to press " 
as in Lith. and Slavonic. 

ados, crcD? " safe ", IE *Jcs-tduos, radical in Homeric TO.VS : 
Skr. tavdh " strong " ; Lett, tuvs " close J> , IE twos. 

ad(/>a "clearly", <ra<Ms "clear ", IE *Jcs-dhmbh-""uncovei ", 
or (in view of Lith. dengti " to cover ", OHG. tune) more 
probably *Jcs-dhnguh-. Radical in dd-nTa* " I bury " (lit. 
" I cover "), rd<f>o$ " tomb ". 

afjfjia, Doric : atipa, aros " mark ", IE *Jcs-tdmn " cut 
out ", root *tem-, *t9m, *tdm (or tern ?) " cut ". 


abundant, frequent, great, long ", etc. IE *Jcs- 
dhughnos, N-grade as in Eng. doughty, 0-grade in Lith. 
daug " many ". 

o-cSjLta, aros (Homeric) " corpse " later " body " : IE 
*Ks-stomn, radical in Lith. stuomuo " stature ". 

(TOGO'S, " able, clever " : IE *Ks-dhobhos " very fit ", radical 
in Lith. ddbinti " to adorn " : Icel. dafna " to thrive ", 
Goth, ga-daban " to beseem, happen ", OS1. doba " oppor- 
tunity ". 

27 may derive from *Rs- or from *sa (Lith. su- t OS1. s&) 
in the following : 

apewvfu, fut : cr/?ecra> " I extinguish " : Lith. is-gesti. 
IE *Jcs-guesio. Cf. Goth, us-qistjan " to kill ". 

adevos "strength ", IE *Ks-guhenos, -es-, or *sd-guhenos, -es-, 
root *guhen- " drive ". 

0</>oSp6s " violent, zealous ", IE *Jcs-bhodros, radical in 
Skr. bhadrdh "good, fair", Russ. bodryj "agile", Lith. 
budrus (vowel influenced by budinti " to wake " and gudrus 
" clever ") " smart ". 

0(f>daj " I slay ", a^ayLs " knife ", radical probably in 
Skr. bhanj, bhag " to break, destroy ", Lith. bangd " breaker, 
wave ", etc. 

aaOjjia " asthma ", IE *n-Jcs-dhm9, -dhmd " not-out- 
breathing ", radical in Skr. dhma, dhmd " to blow ". 

IE *Jcs -\- k,Jc (and K from gh, gh), also *Jcs + sk, sJc become a 
(earlier *KO) 

This formula is difficult to justify in fact. The prefix avv- 
Old Attic (w " together " may derive from *Jcs-Jcom. For 
o> u in the presence of ks, cf. vv " night ", TruftV " box ". 

IE *Jcs + p (and Trfrom bh), also *Jcs + sp become i/j 

i/jt,da> " I dance, play ", IE *Jcs-pisddio. Radical in Skr. 
pid, Greek 7rte^a>, mafco " I press ". 

j/ft^cu " I feed on pap ", IE *Ks-piio, radical in Lett, pitas 
" food ", OS1. pitati, etc. 


" bald ", IE *1cs-pllos " hairless ". Radical in Gk. 
TriAos- " hair ", etc. 

<liaia> " I mince ", ^raicrroV " gruel ", IE *Jcs-p9uio " I beat 
out ", pp : Rs-pwistos, radical in Gk. TTCUCO : Lat. pavio 
" I beat ", Skr. j?w;^ " tyre of wheel ", pava " sift, purify ", 
OHG fowan (fawjan) " thresh (wheat), sift, winnow ". 

i/jvo) " I cheat ", perhaps IE *Jcs-speudo " I press out ", 
radical in aTrcvScu " press on, hasten ", 0-grade in Lith, 
spauda " press " : crTrovSij " haste ". 

i/jvxo* " I blow ", il>v X ri " breath, spirit ", IE *Ks-pugho 
" I blow out ", radical in OHG fuht (*pughtos) " damp ", 
cf. Eng. fog : Arm. hoki " spirit ", and hov, hoym " wind " 

B. THE PREFIX d- FROM EITHER *de-, de- or *do- t do- 

The prefix *do, common to Germanic, Celtic, Baltic, and 
Slavonic, is universally reduced in Greek, Armenian, and 
Albanian. Cf. Alb. bierr "lose, destroy", IE *bherio "I 
strike ", besides dbierr, bdierr, and vdierr (according to 
dialect) " I destroy ", IE *de- or *do-bherio. In Armenian 
the prefix d- occurs in d-nang " poor " (lit. " denuded "), 
d-hag (*de-satis) " unpleasant ". In the following tentative 
etymologies, the requirements of sense will indicate *de- 
or *do~. 

IE *de/do -\- labial or sp becomes TTT 

TTTV, TTTVXOS " a fold ", TTTvavco " I fold ", IE *do-bhugio, 
radical in English " buy " (orig. " bend "). 

TTrtWco " I grind coarsely, pound, husk ", IE *de-pisio, 
radical in Skr, pis " to grind ", Russian pseno " millet " 
(*pisimnom " ground "), and cf. Gk. Trnaavj] " husked 
barley " (*de-pisimnd). 

TTToeo) " I scare away ", IE *de-bhoieio : Alb. dboj, bdoj, 
vdoj " I scare away ", radical in Skr. bhayah " fear " and 
OS1. boJQ *$ " I fear ". 

rrrvpa) fut : Trrvpaj " I scare ", IE *de-bhurid, root bhur 
" rage ", Skr. bhur, Lat. furo, Lettish bum " I bewitch ", 
Arm. purrn (*bhurmno-) " fiery, violent ". 


" I cause to stumble ", IE *de-p&uid " I strike 
down ", radical in Gk. 

IE de/do -f- guttural becomes KT- 

" I get ", KTTJfjLa " property ", etc. IE *de- or 
*do-ghduo, radical in Lith. gauti " to get ". The word /crrj/za 
" property " corresponds to IE *de-ghaumn, radical in Icel. 
gaumr " heed ", whence geyma (*ghdumio) " to watch, keep ", 
Lett, gaumeju " I observe ". 

Kreivoj " I kill ", KTOVOS " murderer ", IE *de- (or *do-) 
-guhenio/*de -guhonos, radical in Gk. 6eiva} : </>6vos. It is 
probable that Skr. ksan " to kill " derives from *Jcs-guken- : 
Lith. is-genu. 


LE verbe grec moderne exprime de fa$on suffisamment nette 
l'ide*e de temps, du moins a 1'indicatif 1 ; il possede, en effet, 
pour ce mode, des formes distinctes de present, de futur et de 
passe ((ypd^Wy 6a ypd(f>a>, ypa<j>a) ; la notion temporelle est 
meme assez complete pour qu'il puisse traduire le futur dans 
le passe, puisqu'il a un conditionnel (9d cypafa). D'autre 
part, chacune de ces notions temporelles peut, le plus souvent, 
se rendre au moyen de deux formes, qui reposent sur des 
themes differents selon V aspect a exprimer : ainsi le futur 
est double (da y/>a<a> et 6a ypdifjo)), le passe e*galement 
(imparfait ey/oa<a, aoriste eypatpa) ; on peut meme ajouter, 
pour 1'expression temporelle du passe et independamment 
de sa valeur d'aspect le systeme periphrastique du parfait, 2 
de formation posterieure en grec, et qui, sans entrer tout a 
fait dans la structure du verbe ne'o-hellenique, temporelle- 
ment se distingue du present et du futur simples (parfait de 
1'indicatif e^co ypd^ei, plus-que-parfait et^a ypai/rei, futur 
anterieur ^a e'^ct) y/oaj/ret, conditionnel parfait ^a efya ypdi/jei). 
Nous considererons ici, abstraction faite des autres formes, 
1'emploi qui est fait, dans le grec actuel, de Vaoriste. 

Normalement, cette forme se situe, au point de vue du 
temps, dans le passe, s'opposant au present et au futur : 
rpex<*> je cours a pour futur 0a r/oe^ca (^a r/oe'fco), et 
Texpression de Tidee de courir dans le passe se fait par 
1'imparfait (erpexa), ou par Faoriste (erpea). 

1 Les modes autres que 1'indicatif distinguent des aspects, mais n'expri- 
ment aucune notion temporelle (subjonctif continu : va ypd<f>a), subjonctif 
momentane : va ypau/ia) ; imperatif continu : ypa^e ; imperatif momentan6 : 
ypdtji ; le temps est absent de ces modes). 

* Cf. D. HESSELING, Het Perfectum in het postklassicke grieks, Amsterdam . 


Mais, a la difference de 1'imparfait, qui, du point de vue 
temporel, est toujours un passe, 1'aoriste peut, temporelle- 
ment, se situer dans le futur, et surtout dans le present. 

Nous examinerons successivement chacun de ces emplois, 
et nous essaierons d'en donner les raisons. 


On peut employer 1'aoriste avec valeur d'un futur a breve 
echeance, d'une part, et avec valeur terminative, d'autre part. 
Get emploi est, toutefois, relativement limite, et c'est avec les 
verbes <f>rdvw j'arrive, x^ va) <<( i e perds, reXeiwvaj je 
finis qu'on le rencontre principalement, ainsi que dans des 
expressions qui ont pris valeur de formules, ce qui n'empeche 
pas, par ailleurs, 1'emploi de 1'aoriste en ce sens avec d'autres 

Voici des exemples empruntes a des textes de langue 

1) Avec <frrdvo) : 

eAdre aTrdVco ... fcaAa, e^racra (XENOPOULOS, MOVOLK- 
piflij, p. 195) montez . . . Bien, j 'arrive tout de suite ; 

TO) pa c/)Taaa (XENOPOULOS, Xepovfielp,, p. 48) j 'arrive 
a I'instant)). 1 
2) Avec 

av ere KaraXdpovve ^a^/ccs" (A. TzARTZANOS, 
Hvvragis, p. 195) si on t'y prend tu seras perdu (1'auteur 
ajoute : egdiravTOs 6a x a ^ & COU P sur tu seras 
e'en est fait de toi, en employant un futur). 

3) Avec reXeiwvo) : 
rov %P VOV va ttjLtacrre AcaAa /cat 
(E. DASKALAKIS, JtTyy^ara, Ta TraiywSa/aa, pp. 128-9) 
si 93, marche 1'an prochain, finis les mensonges. 

1 Cf. L. ROTJSSEL, Grammaire descriptive du Eomeique litteraire, p. 189 : 
L'aoriste exprime avec vivacite une action prochaine ou immanquable . . . 
eftasa Me voici ! eftase (Le gar9on) va venir ! [il s'agit ici des formes, 
phonetiquement transcrites, <f>raaa, ctfn-aae]. Et, p. 191 : I1 n'y a pas 
de forme speciale pour indiquer un futur rapproche. 

Voir A. MEILLET, Sur Vaoriste sigmatique (Melanges F. de Saussure, 
pp. 79-106). 


4) Avec d'autres verbes: 

Ko/3tt} je coupe : CTOVKOI/JOL OTTOV ere /?po> rrj fjuvrr) que je 
te trouve, je te couperai le nez (Zarvp. 'E<f>r)[ji., n 9, 1911, 
p. 3 ; cet exemple est mentionne par L. ROUSSEL, Grammaire 
descriptive du Romeique litteraire, p. 189) ; 

Tpwa) je mange : o-' efaya (familier) je t'aurai (sert 
aussi a exprimer 1'exclamation fran9aise prends garde (a toi), 
gare a toi !) ; 

<jK<ivaj je creve : ecr/cao-a sapristi ! est frequemment 
usite avec la valeur de 6a a/cdcra> qui se rencontre e"galement 
dans la langue courante (cf. XENOPOULOS, Xcpovpetp,, p. 40, 
94, et MovoLKpifa, p. 240) ; 

TTvlya) j'etouife : cr/cacre, ytart CT* eTrvt^a finis (arrete), 
sinon je t'etrangle (je vais t'etouffer) (PiKROS, TovpTreKi, 
p. 84). 

L'emploi de Taoriste avec le sens du futur appartient 
essentiellement a la langue familiere. 


Les emplois de 1'aoriste se rapportant au present sont 
beaucoup plus riches. On les rencontre avec des verbes de 
sens tres varies, mais de preference avec des verbes de mouve- 
ment, d'ope"rations des sens et de 1'esprit, avec des expressions 
interrogatives, et dans un certain nombre de formules. 
Voici des exemples. 

1) Verbes exprimant des actions ou des etats divers. 
a) Idee de mouvement ou de station: 
apyrjcra je suis en retard, je retarde, je tarde (en ce 
moment) (de dpyoi) ; 

je commence a l'instant (de dp^t^w) (ap^to-c va 
voila qu'il commence a pleuvoir) ; 
eywa (ou ytV-^/ca) je deviens (de yiVou/zat) (KARKAVITSAS, 
'0 ZrjTidvos, p. 13 : Tras* arov KOV</>O /cat rov Ate? TOVTO AC* 
Kivo KL afjLccrcos rj SouAeta aov ylvr\K tu vas chez le sourd 
et tu lui racontes un boniment et, 93, y est, ton affaire est 
faite) ; 

7Tcra je tombe (de TTC^TCU) (rcopa TTOV cncaav TroAAot 

PHILO. TBANS. 1942. C 


avOpwrroi yXriyopa, ytVerai rj epyacria maintenant que beau- 
coup s'y mettent, le travail ve se faire vite) l ; 

ppia je jette (de pi^ycj) (ratpa roppi^a. maintenant 
je joue <je jette les cartes) ) ; 

earcjaa je finis (de <7o6va>) (K. MALAMOU, Fia Xiyrj dydnrj, 
p. 150 : a/ta Tret? TO r/cAtrorei'/co eacocre quand on parle 
de Glitseiko il n'y a plus rien a dire <c'est tout dire) ) ; 

(f>raa (ou e^racra) j'arrive (de ^raveo) (Tn. CAS- 
TANAKIS, Ol nptyKrjTres, p. 46 : Karcre K l^rafe assieds- 
toi, il arrive) (voir plus haut egalement) ; 

77/0 da j'arrive (de epxovfiai) (/xoAt? rjp 0e il vient 
d'arriver, feTrtr^Ses' 77/3 ^a j 'arrive expres, ijp^e ajpaia 
a tombe bien) ; 

7rapai,T7)aa j'abandonne, j'y renonce (de Trapatroi) 
(VALAORITIS, Mv^/Aoorwa, avd(rr)s Bdyias, p. 58 du 1. 1 des 
(Euvres Completes: 

ire<f>TOVv 7rdva> rov oi Treflafiei/oi. 
Me TrapaiTTJaave. Kavels 8e p,Vi. 

les morts tombent sur lui. Us m'abandonnent. Aucun 
ne reste) ; on notera que Taoriste TrapaiTijcrave se trouve 
entre les deux presents 7T<f>rovv et fj,evi ; 

Tr^yajLte nous voila arrives, nous y voila (de Tr^ycuVco), 
generalement au pluriel ; 

Trrjpa je prends (de rraipva}) (Trijpe rov Karijfopo il est 
en ce moment sur une pente) ; 

aa>6r]Ka je suis sauve (de cra)^a)) (VENEZIS, To Novpcpo 
31328, p. 114 : av ere "xpeid^owrav, cra)6r}Ks qu'ils aient 
besoin de toi, tu es sauve) ; 

je termine, je finis (de r\ioivw) (rwpa 
rr) SovXid JJLOV a Tinstant je termine mon travail, 
par opposition a reAetc^vca je suis en train de terminer) ; 

TaaKiaTrjKa je suis brise (de raaKL^oj) (TERZAKIS, 
<P6ivo7TO)pivr) vfj,<f>a)vta, p. 26 : KL apa rov Scoaets 1 )Ltta /cat 
TO ^TUTTTyo-ets', 7rd(/> / . . . oAa raaKiarirjKav et quand tu lui 
donnes un coup et que tu le frappes, pan ! . . . rien ne va plus ; 

1 On remarquera, dans 1'exemple en question, 1'emploi de rwpa main- 
tenant a cote de 1'aoriste eTreaav. Voir aussi 1'exemple suivant. 


noter aussi 1'expression familiere : Se raaKiorrrjKa je n'y 
renonce pas, je ne me declare pas vaincu, je ne recule pas, 
cf. PSICHARI, Fpa^aTLK^ t. Ill, p. 276) ; 

TcraKtucra (de rcraKwvcu) j'attrape (ere raaKwaa je t'y 
prends! ). 

b) Idee de fatigue, d'epuisement, de destruction: 

je suis a bout (de a7ro/<:a</u-)va>) (aTrd/caj^e, ou 
il est extenue, a bout, et ri aW/cc^te? ; ou en 
es-tu ?); 

je suis souffrant (de dppworro}) (cr^jLtepa 
aujourd'hui il n'est pas bien) ; 

je suis las (de )8apt/z,at) (TO pap0r)Ka j'en ai 
assez, mais /?apie'/*ai je m'ennuie) ; 

j'ai un vertige, la tete me tourne (de 

j'etouffe de chaleur (pas de present) ; 
Komacra j'ai du mal (de /coma^o) (au passif KOT 
signifie je suis fatigue) ; 

je suis fatigue, la fatigue me prend (de 

j'ai envie de dormir (de 

j'assourdis, je fatigue (de 
(Malamou, ibid., p. 242 : Xpvaa) ! pas gcKovfaves Chryso ! 
tu nous assommes ) ; 

je suis mort, je*"n'en peux plus (de 7re0aiVo>) ; 
(il) est plein de vers, il est pourri (de 
af a> se remplir de vers) ; 

c) Idee de nourriture: 
Scti/racra j'ai soif (de 

je suis ivre (de 
j'ai faim (de 
je suis rassasie (de ^o/yrafco ou 

d) Notion de temperature: 

KarjKa je brule (de /catco) (/ca^/ce? tu brules, expression 
appartenant a un jeu de societe) ; 


Kpvwaa j'ai froid (de 

Trdycjaa je gele (de 7raya>va>) (au figure, aussi : Tray w 6 '77 KO. 
je me glace de terreur) ; 

TTovvnaaa je suis transi de froid (de TTovvrid^co) (In. 
CASTANAKIS, Ta MvarTJpia rrjs Pcotuocrvvrjs, p. 217 : ris 
n6pTs ! cTTowndaafjic ! les portes ! nous gelons !). 

e) Activite generate de V esprit: 

ypvKr)6r)Kafji nous sommes d'accord (de ypvKa>) ; 
6vjj,t]6r]Ka je me souviens (de Ovfjiov^ai) (ra)pa TTOV TO 
BvfirjdrjKa pendant que j'y pense) ; 

KardXafia je comprends (de KaraXa^aiva)) ; 

m'en doute (de ^vpLt,ov^ai je flaire) ; 
nous sommes d'accord, c'est entendu (de 

j'y suis, je saisis (de ^coTto> j'6claire ; 
on dit aussi : /ze <j>a>Ticrs tu me mets sur la voie). 

f ) Verbes impersonnels : 

Ces verbes sont relatifs a la temperature et aux saisons. 
Ainsi : 

l fait nuit (de VVXTO>VL la nuit vient) ; 
il fait jour (de ^^pd)Vi le jour se leve, 
ou il se fait jour) (on dit egalement, avec un sujet : fidpcae 
6 ijXios il fait deja grand jour ; une chanson cretoise a x : 
ep/odStae r) yi dvaroXrj, 
KO! fiyalvzi r* aarpo rfjs avyfjs 

rorient soudain est rose, et Tastre de Taube commence a 
sortir) ; 

aKOTetviaae il fait sombre (de aKOTcwid^ei, rombre 
s'6tend, le soir tombe) ; 

XifJLwvi,a(T voila l'hiver (de ^ct^cowa^t l'hiver vient, 
approche, s'etend). 

D'une maniere generale, il est toujours possible d'employer 

1 Of. A. JEANNABAKIS, Kretas Volkslieder, p. 219, To Saxrv\i8i; et 
HESSELING-PEKNOT, Chrestomathie neo-hellenique, p. 167 ; le texte a 6te 
traduit par H. PERNOT, Anthologie populaire de la Grece moderne, p. 141. 
On ne peut s'empecher de penser a Homere : Macro i^Ato?, aKtdovrai 8'dyucot. 


a 1'aoriste avec valeur de present un verbe d'etat ou d'action 
accompagn4 de ratpa maintenant, ainsi : rcopa ^vwyare 
il vient de se re>eiller (mais : gvwd il est en train de 
se re"veiller, et : gvvvrjcre il s'est reVeille, elvai fvwjj^evos 
il est, il se trouve reVei!16), ra>pa arjKc&OrjKe il vient de se 
lever ; ces constructions repondent au franyais venir de, 
et elles ont en grec meme deux equivalents : poXis ^vvvqae 
et o re gvvvTjae il vient de se reVeiller ; la ou le fran9ais 
recourt a deux verbes qu'il relie pour marquer la succession 
rapide des actions, le grec exprime les choses selon une autre 
conception : il se sert de 1'aoriste qu'il accompagne d'un 
adverbe de maniere, /xoAts- a peine, ou de temps, rwpa 
maintenant, et qui, ou bien ne situe pas encore Faction 
dans le passe (p,6\i$), ou la situe nettement dans le present 

2 Expressions interrogatives. 
a) Fait general: 

a(f>rjaa je laisse (de d</>tjvw) (Se (jfafacres ', tu ne me 
laisses <rien> ?) ; 

Kafia je fais (de KOLVOJ) (ro/ca/xe? ; 9a y est ?, familier) ; 

7ra6a je souffre (de na6awa>) (ri evades ; qu'est-ce 

qui t'arrive ?, ri evades TTOV . . . ; qu'as-tu done a (que) 

7ra*/ja je cesse (de navco) (evades KLoXas I c'est deja 
fini ?, XENOPOULOS, 77oAuya/xta, p. 124). 

b) Operation des sens : 

aKovcra j'entends (de OLKOVO}) (aKovaes I tu entends ? j 
1'aoriste s'oppose au present, dans cet usage interrogatif, 
en ce que aKovaes signifie seulement tu entends ?, tandis 
que aKovs signifie tu entends cela ? avec une valeur 
intensive, parfois ironique) ; 

e?Sa je vois (de fiXeTrco) (elSes ; tu vois ?, tandis 
que fiXeTreis signifierait tu vois bien ?). 

c) Elocution: 

elira je dis (de Aecu) (TTOJS elves ; comment dis-tu ? ; 
on a aussi : ri elves ', tu dis ?, tandis que ri Xes \ 


qu'est-ce que tu racontes la ? a une valeur intensive l ) ; 
(/>a>vaa j'appelle (de <covaco) (cf. VALAORITIS, ibid., 
p. 58: 

K V a> /xe aepvovvc /cat /Lie Trarowe, 
/caTrotos" (/)0)va^ . . . ZW/cow /a a/cowe 
et tandis qu'ils me tiraillent et m'ecrasent, soudain on 
m'appelle . . . ils s'arretent pour ecouter (TTOLOS </>oWf e ; 
qui appelle ?). 

d) Expression d'un sentiment: 

y/aoriaa j'ai peur (de y/aemfo>, verbe qui exprime 
familierement la peur) (y/aoTiaes- ; tu as peur ?) ; 

ecocra j'entoure, je ceins (de coi>a>) (CT* e^axrav ra 
^etSta ; tu es inquiet ? tu es a la torture ? m. a m. : les 
serpents t'entourent ?) ; 

eu^aptCTTTy^^Kra je suis satisfait (de 
remercie) (evxapicrTr)6'qKs ; te voila satisfait 

ricrv-^acra je suis tranquille (de y(rvxda)) 
te voila tranquille ?) ; 

iKavoTTOLrjOrjKa je suis content (de IKCLVOTTOICL) je 
satisfais) (lKavo7roLrj6r)K$ ; tu es content ?) ; 

(ra) Karefiacra (ra povrpa) je fais la moue (de /carej8a^o> 
je baisse (la tete)) (cf. PIKROS, TOU^TTC/CI, p. 80 : TO. 
Kare fiacre ; il boude ?) ; 

<j>o/3r)6r]Ka j'ai peur (de 
peur ?). 

e) Operation intellectuelle : 
6vfjLij6rjKa je me souviens (de 

XepovfieifjL, p. 37 : /cart dvfjL'tjd 
chose ? cela ne te dit rien ?) ; 

KarefirjKa je descends (de Karefiaivaj, au figure) (cf. 
PlKROS, TovfjL7TKLj p. 84 : rcvpa crov KarprjK avro ; c'est 
maintenant que tu y penses ?) ; 

KardXafia je comprends (de KaraXafiaivcu) (AcaraAajSe? ; 
tu comprends ?) ; 

1 Cf. mon etude des Diverses Valeurs de Vaspect verbal en grec moderne, 
in : Bulletin de la Societe de Linguistique de Paris, n 98, pp. 42-44. 

tu as 

cela te dit quelque 


j'entre (de piraiva), au figure) (rwpa 
maintenant tu y es ?, sous-entendu aro vo^pa dans lo 
sens de ce que Ton dit) ; 

je comprends mal, je me meprends (de 
(are Trape^rj'yTjcra ; je te comprends mal ?) ; 

je comprends (de crKafiTrd^aj, qui exprime tres 
familierement 1'idee de comprendre) (o7ca/z7racre ; il com- 
prend ?). 

Ces emplois sont courants sous la forme interrogative ; 
mais on rencontre les memes verbes a 1'aoriste et avec la 
valeur temporelle de present dans des phrases de type non 
interrogatif egalement. 

3) Formules cour antes (au singulier ou au pluriel). 

a) Politesse: 

/caAcos- (ra) Se^r^/ccs- te voila content, tant mieux pour 
toi (de Se'xoiyxcu) (se dit au re9u d'une bonne nouvelle, ou a 
1'accueil d'amis, de parents, m. a m. tu (les) re9ois bien) ; 

/caAcDs- ripdes tu arrives bien, c'est fort bien que tu viennes 
(de ep^ou/Ltat) (se dit a 1'arrivee d'un hote, d'un ami, d'un 
parent) ; 

/caAcDs* ere yvpa tu es bien aimable (de ^ptWco) (reponse 
au souhait exprime par la formule precedente et la suivante, 
m. a m. je te trouve bien) ; 

/caAcos- optcres- sois le bienvenu (de 6pit,a) j'ordonne) 
(se dit a 1'arrivee de quelqu'un, ami, parent, hote, m. a m. 
tu ordonnes a ton gre ) ; 

XaprjKa TroXv enchante (de ^at/oov^tat je me rejouis) 
(se dit quand on fait la connaissance de quelqu'un qui est 
presente, comme ^at/oco rroXv, meme signification ; on ajoute 
sou vent : TTOV ere yvajpiaa de faire ta connaissance). 

b) Idee de contentement ou de depit: 

yeAacra (de yeAca rire) je me moque de, je triche 
(/AC yeAao-es- tu te moques de moi) ; 

7Ta6a (de TraOatvaj) je subis (/caAa r^v eTraOcs c'est 
bien fait pour toi, TTJV 7ra6a 9a m'arrive, rl e 
qu'est-ce qui te prend ?). 


c) Idee generate d 'impatience, de colere: 

papedrjKo, j'en ai assez (de j8a/He'//,at je m'ennuie) 
(cf. plus haut) ; 

cKoifta je brise (de /co/?o> couper) (fiovKoiftes TO af/xa, 
TO K<f>dXi tu me fais une peur !) ; 

sapristi! (de OKO.VW je creve) (cf. plus haut) ; 
je suis en colere, je me fache (de 0v[jLwva)) (yiari 
pourquoi te faches-tu ? ) ; 
Trrjpa je prends (de iraipvaj), dans 1'expression rov irfjpc 
SiVAa il ne peut pas le souffrir, m. a m. il le prend 
de cote*, par opposition a 1'expression ou le verbe est au 
present : TO Traipva> 8177 Aa je m'etends, je m'allonge, 
m. a m. je prends 1'espace de cote, je prends mes aises) ; 
0KOTi(jTr)Ka j'en ai par dessus la tete (de o-KOTtfco 
j'obscurcis (cf. aussi : /xe o-AcoTto-e? tu m'assommes) ; 

je suis fou (de T/oeAAcuVco j'affole) 
\ tu n'es pas fou ? tu n'y penses pas ?). 

d) Idee de crainte: 

ydviaaa je me seche (de yavtafcu je m'empate) 
ij yAcoo-cra fjiov j'ai la gorge seche) ; 
je perds (de ^ai/co), dans ra-^acta je perds la 
tete, je m'anx)le, sous-entendu TOL pvaXd resprit, la 
cervelle, et au passif dans ^a^^/ca je suis perdu ; 

je suis pris, saisi (de mavoi;/xai) ; 
a j'ai peur (de Tpop,da>) (cf. KARKAVITSAS, 
Aoyia rrjs TTAoip^s', p. 7 : aKovaj rrj </>a)vr) . . . va fipovra . . . 
rpofjiafa /cat Tpe^co Triaa) CXTTO rovs vavrcs tfj'entends la 
voix . . . retentir . . . j'ai peur et je me mets acourir derriere 
les matelots) (cf. Xe"nopoulos, Xc/oou^et/x, p. 37 : /cat p, 
et tu me fais une peur !) ; 

rjKa je suis pris, saisi, pinc6 (de raaKwva)) (cf. plus 
haut) ; 

j'ai peur (de <o/fou/xai) (cf. plus haut) ; 

(de ^peta^ou/zat j'ai besoin), dans Texpres- 
sion Ta xP i( *'(mr)Ka j'ai peur (expression familiere de la 
peur) (cf. KONDOGLOU, Baaavra, p. 139 : 'O Sovprjs ra 


KCLI yia, va /z^v TTOJ ^e/z/Ltara, K* eya> TO tSio, 
/>ta K* ol 8vo pas TO, x/oeiaoTTj/ca/ze a/co/xa TTCIO TroAv . . . 
Xouris est pris de peur, et, a vrai dire, moi aussi, et voil 
qu'a nous deux nous avons encore plus peur . . .). 

D'autres faits pourraient etre ajoutes a ceux-la. Le principe 
est que 1'aoriste peut frequemment se rapporter au present. 
Or, jamais pareille valeur ne se rencontre pour 1'imparfait. 

II y a lieu d'examiner les interpretations que Ton peut en 


Le fait a 6t6 remarque" des longtemps, mais il ne semble 
pas que Ton en ait rendu compte d'une maniere complete. 

Deja, E. Legrand 1 le signalait dans sa grammaire. Depuis, 
il n'est guere de grammaire courante qui ne le mentionne, 
mais sans en marquer suffisamment 1'originalite ou rim- 
portance, et sans 1'interpreter. H. Pernot 2 6crit simplement 
(dans la 4 e edition de sa Grammaire, p. 171, REMARQUE I) : 
L'aoriste de certains verbes peut avoir le sens du present 
... (il donne comme exemples vvcrraga j'ai sommeil, 
de warded*, Trelvacra j'ai faim, de newti, etc.) ; il ajoute 
(ibid., REMARQUE II) : L'aoriste grec correspond egalement 
a un present fran9ais dans des tournures comme : KOL-^KCS 
tu brules !, eTrecres- tu tombes!, ^a^^/ce? tu es perdu ! 
etc.. L. Roussel, 3 dans sa Grammaire, mentionne, 
p. 172, Set^racra j'ai ou j'eus soif, et TretVacra j'ai ou 
j*eus faim ; meme remarque, p. 189 ; il ajoute, p. 188 : 
I1 (1'aoriste) indique une action ou un groupe d'actes con- 
side"res en bloc, et appartenant au passe" ; ou bien une action 
passee dont les consequences subsistent ; ou bien une action 
tout a fait mise en train, d'ou un sens inchoatif, et il cite 
, Kovpacrr^Kar t y/ctoTto p s > . Les grammaires grecques 

1 Qrammaire grecque moderne, in 8, Paris, 1878, p. 155. 

* Grammaire du grec moderne, Premiere Partie : Langue parUe, 4 e Edition, 
Paris, 1921 (Gamier) ; aujourd'hui, 5 e edition (1930). 

8 Qrammaire descriptive du Romeique litteraire, in 8, Paris, 1922 (De 
Boccard). Une description plus complete de ces faits se trouve dans 1'ouvrage 
de A. TZARTZANOS, NcoeXXrjvtKT) Zvvra&s, 1928, Athenes, pp. 194-200. 


de Vlastos, 1 Damaskinos, 2 Voutieridis, 3 Oekonomos 4 sont 
muettes sur ce point. 

Le defaut, a mon sens, d'une explication au moyen du sens 
inchoatif ou resultatif de 1'aoriste est de ne rendre compte 
que de quelques cas, de ne valoir que pour quelques verbes, 
et non pour Fensemble des faits qui, pourtant, se presentent 
bien dans des conditions generates analogues. Les exemples 
choisis plus haut sont tels que Faction indiquee par 1'aoriste 
ne se refere pas a un debut ou a une fin (par exemple, 
VALAORITIS 5 ecrit : 

va f < 

av aairpiaa, av eye/oacra, 
yia ore 6a ai>avtcocra> 

0ui, Frosine, je t'aime . . . s'il est vrai que je suis blanc, 
que je suis vieux, je rajeunirai pour toi). On peut a la rigueur 
soutenir que Trelvacra j'ai faim, Sei'i/rao-a j'ai soif, vvcrrafa 
j'ai sommeil, s'expliquent par un sens inchoatif, comme 
en general les verbes marquant un besoin ou un desir ; mais 
ce n'est pas tou jours avec cette valeur que ces aoristes sont 
employes. La langue oppose plutot 7reo>o> je suis affame, 
Set^roi je suis altere, VVVTOL^O) je suis somnolent aux 
formes aoristiques correspondantes, qui, au lieu de Yetat, 
indiquent un acte. Les aoristes KovpdarrjKa je suis fatigue, 
Tr^ya/ze nous voici auraient plutot une valeur de resultat. 
Mais que dire de eVeae? tu tombes, apyrjaa je suis en 
retard, e^racra me voila, rL eW^es- ; qu'as-tu ?, 
etc. ? 

On ne peut expliquer les valeurs de 1'aoriste si Ton considere 
un moment de la duree, et, d'autre part, on ne peut rendre 
compte des changements possibles dans la designation des 

TiK TTJS rjfjurriKijs, Ath^nes, 1914. 

rpafj,fj.ariKr] yia rrjv 5. Tdr) rov AijfjLQriKOv, Ath^nes, 1930. 

, Ath^nes, 1932. 

ri (TTJS Koivrjs ArjfJuynKijg), Ath&nes, 1933. 
(Euvres Completes ('Airavra), III, 62. La citation est reproduite par 
L. ROUSSEL, op. cit., p. 217. 


II semble, au contraire, qu'il faille partir d'un fait dominant : 
la valeur fondamentale d' aspect de I'aoriste. 1 

Le verbe neo-grec repose sur I'opposition de deux themes, 
Vun de present, Vautre d'aoriste. Au present, qui 
exprime la continuite ou la repetition de 1'action, s'oppose 
1' aoriste , qui exprime le momentane, le fait simple sans 
duree. Cette valeur n'exclut d'ailleurs nullement les notions 
de commencement ou d'achevement de 1'action, qui en sont 
derivees, et qu'a prises 1'aoriste la ou les anciens systemes 
morphologiques exprimant des aspects ont disparu de la 
conjugaison. Ces valeurs tiennent de 1'aspect, non du temps. 
En effet, ce n'est pas parce que 1'aoriste a un sens inchoatif 
ou resultatif, en plusieurs cas, que 1'action qu'il traduit se 
refere au present, c'est parce que 1'aoriste est avant tout un 
aspect que sa valeur temporelle n'est pas fixee de maniere 
certaine : etant 1'indication d'un point dans une action 
en cours, il peut se situer au commencement ou au terme de 
cette action. De ce que 1'aoriste exprime d'ordinaire un 
passe, on pense qu'il ne saurait exprimer autre chose, et on 
veut expliquer sa valeur de present par une raison temporelle. 
La valeur temporelle n'est pas, en realite, liee a 1'aoriste ; 
quel que soit, en tous cas, le temps auquel il se rapporte, 
1'aoriste dissimule toujours, derriere le temps, l'aspect. 
Entre j'ai compris et je comprends, nous faisons en 
fran9ais essentiellement une difference de temps. Cette 
difference peut, certes, se retrouver en grec dans les formes 
KardXa^a, KaraXapaiva), mais d'autres oppositions, plus 
complexes, interviennent, qui peuvent d'ailleurs se combiner 
avec I'opposition temporelle. 

Seul de tous les modes a la difference du fran9ais, par 
exemple , 1'indicatif en grec moderne exprime des temps 
(cf. ci-dessus, p. 1), et, a ce titre, il possede des jeux distincts 
de desinences ; en gros : 

1 Cf. A. MIRAMBEL, art. cite plus haut. Voir aussi, du meme auteur : 
U aspect verbal en grec moderne, Problemes et Methode (in : Revue de Philologie, 
Paris, 1932, fascicules 3-4), et : Precis de Grammaire elementaire du Grec 
Moderne, Paris (Belles-Lettres), 1939, pp. 118-19, 146, surtout 165-7. 


-o>, -cis 1 , -t, -otyxe, -ere, -ow(e) (pour le present), 
-a, -es-, -e, -a/Ltc, -are, -av(e) (pour le passe). 
L'opposition d'aspect est demeur6e nette au passe, 
entre 1'aoriste (eypai/ta) et 1'imparfait (eypa^a). Elle etait 
fondamentale dans 1'ancienne langue. La periphrase d'ou 
est sorti le futur actuel (0e'Aco va avec le subjonctif) * a permis 
un jeu d'aspects, au futur comme au passe, par 1'opposition 
de 1'ancien subjonctif present et de 1'ancien subjonctif aoriste, 
aujourd'hui confondus, pour les desinences, avec les formes in- 
dicatives : da ypd(/>a), 0a ypdi/ja> ; toute valeur modale propre 
s'en est retiree, et ils rentrent dans le systeme de 1'indicatif, 
qu'ils competent depuis la disparition du futur ancien. 
Mais, au present, il n'existe qu'une seule forme, ypd^aj, qui 
normalement a la valeur d'un continu, mais peut, a 1'occasion, 
exprimer le momentane, surtout accompagnee d'un adverbe 
ou d'un complement (maniere, temps), susceptible de limiter 
la duree du proces. 

Ainsi, compart au passe et au futur, le present, dans le 
verbe grec actuel, ne possede qu'une forme. II n'y a pas la 
1'equivalent de ce qui existe en slave dans 1'opposition du 
verbe perfectif et du verbe imperfectif (dobyt'/dobyvat'), ou 
1'on voit, d'ailleurs, le present perfectif servir aussi de futur 
momentane au verbe imperfectif (kontchu/ budukontchat'). 
Un seul exemple en grec est celui des verbes de mouvement 
Tract) /Trrjyaivaj je vais ; mais il s'agit la du jeu d'aspect 
perfectif '/imperfectif, non du jeu continu /momentane. La 
n6cessite d'exprimer, en nombre de cas, 1'aspect momen- 
tane au present, a amene le grec a utiliser 1'aoriste, a defaut 
d'autre precede, 2 et a s'en servir, en dehors de sa valeur 

1 Cf. J. PSICHAKI, Essai de Phonetique neo-grecque, Futur compost du 
Grec Moderne (in : Memoires de la Societe de Linguistique de Paris, t. V, 
fasc. 5, 1884. Voir aussi : A. MIBAMBEL, Le Futur neo-grec et Vaspect verbal 
(en cours de publication). 

* Le grec ancien a connu des verbes a suffixe -dot au present, avec 
valeur terminative et limitative : ainsi <j>dwv&(a s'opposait a <f>6iva) 
(cf. P. CHANTKAINE, p. 93 des Melanges Vendryes, Paris, 1925). Ce suffixe 
n'a plus aucune valeur propre aujourd'hui, et -jrciBat je persuade* s'oppose 
a son aoriste eirciaa comme ypa^tu a Iypa0a ; -dot n'est plus qu'une desinence 
possible de present, comme -va), -to, etc. Le proced6 n'etait d'ailleurs 


temporelle de passe, comme d'un present momentan6. 
Ceci permet de poser, pour le mode indicatif, et a Finterieur 
de chaque temps, les oppositions ft aspect suivantes : 

continu : momentane : 

Passe: ypa<t>a 

Futur: 6a ypd<f>a) 9a 

Present: ypd^a) efy/ocu/fa 

La chose etait d'autant plus aisee que les themes verbaux 
ont garde en grec une valeur d'aspect, et que, dans 1'histoire 
du grec, c'est Vaoriste qui, pour le verbe, a ete V element le plus 
stable. II n'y a pas, rigoureusement, parallelisme dans 
1'opposition du present a Faoriste : les aoristes ont survecu 
a bien des presents, et des presents ont ete refaits sur 1'aoriste, 
d'une part (ainsi navddva) a disparu, alors que e^aBov se 
maintenait sous la forme efiada, forme sur laquelle a ete 
refait le present fjuadalvaj) x ; d'autre part, des presents sont 
passes a un type de conjugaison differente, par Fintermediaire 
de I'aoriste(ju,e0uco a disparu, et 1'aoriste /ze'fluoras'est maintenu, 
mais, d'apres le type dyaTr^cra/dyaTra), on a refait fjueOvcra/ 
peOaj) ; enfin, il existe assez sou vent, pour un aoriste, plusieurs 
formes de present (e/coi/ra sert d'aoriste a Ko<f)ra> f KO^OJ, 
je coupe, egvaa a vva> et faiW je gratte, 

et xopraiva) je rassasie, Kpejjiacra a Kpp,a) t 
je pends, i/r^tcra a i/r^oi, ifj^^i^a) je 
vote, etc.). Le systeme du verbe, tel qu'il apparait aujour- 
d'hui, est le resultat d'une tradition dans laquelle des oppositions 
essentielles de themes se sont maintenues, present - aoriste, qui 
ont domine la formation des modes et des temps. II y a equilibre 
entre le systeme verbal fonde sur la distinction des aspects, 
et le systeme verbal groupe en conjugaison. Le sens de 

etendu qu'a certains verbes ; la formation n'a pas ete generalisee. Le fait 
est curieux de voir 1'indecision au present, alors que les oppositions d'aspect 
sont nettes dans les formes du passe et du futur. 

1 Voir ma Grammaire, p. 162. Ajoutons que c'est 1'aoriste qui a ete le 
point de depart de plusieurs formations verbales dans les langues balkaniques 
(cf. A. MAZON, D'une formation verbale slave d'origine greco-turque, in : 
Melanges Vendryes, 1925) ; pour le roumain, voir K. SANDFELD, Linguistique 
Balkanique, Paris, 1932. 


1'aoriste peut meme, dans certains cas, etre assez eloigne 
du sens du present, toute question de temps mise a part : 
ainsi a/couAiaf o> signifie se remplir de vers, mais crKo 
signifie etre plein de vers (cf. plus haut), TO iraipvaj 
signifie s'e*tendre, se coucher, mais rov irrjpe SiVAa il ne 
peut pas sounrir ; ces faits sont a rapprocher de ri Ae? ; 
qu'est-ce que tu racontes la ! et ri etTres ; qu'est-ce 
que tu dis ?, /u'Aa KaXd parle comme il convient et 
[LiXijxre KaXd parle bien, des nuances figurees ou de restriction 
pouvant ainsi etre exprimees. Enfin, il est a noter que 1'aoriste 
peut, non seulement se rapporter au futur (cf. plus haut, 
<f>raaa t etc.), mais encore etre remplace, dans certains cas, 
par un futur ; ainsi, au lieu de eoxacra (cf. les exemples cites 
plus haut), on rencontre da tr/caerca (meme sens) (XENOPOULOS, 
MovaKpiflir], p. 240 : 0a a/cao-co j 'enrage ! sapristi !, et 
Xc/ooujSet/z, p. 40 et 94 : 6a fie wifrp j'6touffe !). 

La persistance de 1'aspect dans une forme verbale, le 
maintien et le developpement de cette forme, sa frequence 
d'emploi dans la langue courante, ont attenue* le besoin 
(realise ailleurs) de coordonner et d'organiser la conjugaison. 
L'idee de temps est demeure"e secondaire, et les facilites 
qu'oifrait 1'aoriste ont contribue a renoncer a la creation d'un 
present aoristique. C'est la forme dont la valeur d'aspect 
se trouvait leplus definie qui a ete le moinsfixee dans V expression 
du temps : c'est aussi celle qui, dans I'ordre de raspect 
exprimait V action dans sa moindre extension. On a vu en slave 
le perfectif capable de se rapporter au present et au futur 
(au contraire de Yimperfectif). En grec encore, 1'ancien infinitif 
aoriste (de type -aat, devenu -tree) a pu, precede de ^cu, 
etre jadis un futur (e^a> ^aaat j'ai a perdre, je vais perdre) 
et devenir un passe dans la forme actuelle du parfait (e^co 
^ao-et j'ai perdu, je me trouve avoir perdu))). 1 Alors, enfin, 
que les formes de Tindicatif (present, imparfait, futur continu 

1 Cf. P. CHANTKAENE, Histoire du Parfait en grec, derni&rp partie, et 
notamment le r61e des periphrases ; sur ce point, voir aussi N. BANESCU, 
Die Entwicklung des griechischen Futurums von der friihbyzantinischen Zeif 
bis zur Gegenwart, Bucarest, 1915, p. 79. 


et momentane) n'expriment qu'une ou deux varietes du temps 
(present et futur imme*diat ; passe et futur dans le passe ; 
futur eloigne ou immediat, passe dans le futur ou futur 
anterieur), Faoriste exprime aussi, non seulement le futur 
a breve echeance et le present momentane, mais le passe* 
simple, le passe immediat, le conditionnel passe* et le plus- 
que-parfait). Par ailleurs, le role des suffixes a e"te dominant 
pour les oppositions de themes. Dans les desinences, 1'effort 
de la langue a ete moindre, et uniquement simplificateur. 
II ne serait pas exagere de dire que 1'aoriste a e*te la base 
principale dans la construction du verbe ne*o-grec. 


L'histoire du grec montre que ce n'est la ni un accident, 
ni un fait nouveau. L'origine s'en retrouve des le grec ancien. 
Le fait s'est developpe avec les efforts que la langue a deployes 
posterieurement pour renouveler 1'expression de l'aspect. 
(Voir Particle de J. Humbert, Verbal Aspect: has it evolved 
from ancient to modern Greek ? dans The Link, No. 1, 1938, 
p. 21, et la distinction entre Vaoriste ancien objectifet Vaoriste 
moderne momentane en soi.) 

I. On sait, en effet, qu'en grec ancien, il n'est pas rare que 
Vaoriste se rapporte au present, marquant 1'idee verbale, pure 
et simple. 1 Ainsi, dans la langue homerique (P, 54), les presents 
rpe^et, oi>ov(nv, /3pvi marquent des actions continues 
et s'opposent aux aoristes cgearpefa, cgcTavvvcre, 2 qui 
indiquent des actes sans duree, mais les deux groupes d'actions 
sont relatifs au present, et ne se distinguent que par Taspect. 

II. II convient, bien entendu, de distinguer cet aoriste 
de Taoriste dit gnomique et de Taoriste dit epistolaire 3 ; 
ce dernier est purement temporel ; Tautre tend a etre rem- 
place par le present dans la langue de la Kowr). Par ailleurs, 
il semble qu'a cette epoque 1'emploi de 1'aoriste a valeur de 
pr4sent se developpe ; nous sommes a un moment ou le 

1 Cf. KOCH-ROUFF, Grammaire Grecque, 2 edition, Paris, 1887, p. 97, 
1, et p. 379, Remarque II. 

8 Cf. aussi F. M. ABEL, Grammaire du Grec Biblique, Paris, 1927, p. 256. 
Ibid., pp. 256-7. 


grec a remanie ses proc6d6s d'expression de 1'aspect, 61iminant 
les parties caduques de son systeme verbal et faisant effort 
pour les renouveler (il suffit de penser a la formation du futur 
nouveau et a I'elimination du parfait ancien, qu'une peri- 
phrase est venue remplacer). 
Quatre groupes de fails peuvent etre invoque*s a 1'appui. 

1) D'abord, ce n'est pas un hasard que Vaoriste gnomique 
tende a s'eliminer en grec biblique l et a etre remplace par le 
present, comme exprimant un fait ge*ne*ral, de portee univer- 
selle. Par exemple, Luc emploie le present (VIII, 16) : ouSet? 
Se Xv^vov ai/tas /caAvTrret, mais Taoriste gnomique encore 
(XIII, 18) : ofjioia ecrrlv KOKKO) mvoLTrews, os Xafiajv avdpanros 
/3aXev els KTJTTOV avrov ; en regard, Matthieu a (XIII, 31) : 
os Xafiojv . . . eo-Tretpei/, mais Marc (IV, 32) e*vite cet aoriste 
et ecrit : os orav (nrapij. II semble ainsi que les r&lacteurs 
aient eu le souci de conserver a 1'aoriste sa valeur d'idee 
verbale pure et simple, et d'eViter tout autre emploi. 

2) En second lieu, la fameuse tournure du grec biblique, 
bien connue t /cat eyeVero, qui sert a introduire une circonstance 
nouvelle dans un recit, ne doit pas etre interpreted comme 
ayant une valeur de passe ; elle indique simplement un fait 
nouveau et voila que. Marc, en effet, emploie 2 a la place 
un present (II, 15) : /cat ytVerai ; ailleurs encore, il se sert 
de /cat evOvs ; la valeur de 1'aoriste eyeVero est done bien 
peu temporelle, 3 comme le prouvent les tournures, deja en 

1 Cf. F. STIEBITZ, Etude jsur V aspect verbal dans le grec du Nouveau 
Testament (Nachrichten der Cech. Ges. der Wissenschaften, 1, 1929) ; D. 
HESSELINQ, op. cit., pp. 216-17 ; A. H. SALONIUS, Zur Sprache der griechis- 
chen Papyrusbriefe, Helsingfors, 1927 ; A. POUTSMA, Over de tempora van de 
Impers. en de Conj. hortat. prohib. in het Grieks, in : Verhandel. Ken. Akad. v. 
Wetensch., t. XXVII, 1928, n 2, 20-1 ; P. CHANTRAINE, Histoire du 
Parfait Grec, Paris, 1927 ; H. PEBNOT, fitudes sur la langue des Evangiles t 
Paris, 1927 ; H. FRISK, Participium und Verbum finitum im Spdtgriechischen 
(in : Glotta, 17, 1928, p. 65). 

2 Cf. H. PERNOT, op. cit. t p. 189 et suiv. ; Recherches d' Histoire et de 
Philosophic religieuses, 4, 1924, pp. 553-8, Kal eyevero dans les Evangiles ; 
JOHANNESSOHN, Z.vergl. Sp., 53, 1926, 161. 

3 On remarquera, dans les exemples qui vont suivre, que KOI f-ycvero 
est accompagne d'un aoriste. II ne saurait etre nullement question d'une 


usage chez Marc : eyevero . . . rjXdev (I, 9), et surtout chez 
Luc, ce qui est remarquable si Ton songe au souci de correction 
de cette redaction : eylvero . . . 7Topvdr] (II, 1), eyeVero 
. . . eAa^e (I, 8), eyeVero . . . etTreV Tts* (XI, 1), eyeVero 
Ste'o-TT? (XXIV, 51), etc. ; 1'evolution dans 1'emploi de cette 
tournure apparait normale en grec, si Ton tient compte de la 
valeur aspective de 1'aoriste, qui, loin de s'affaiblir, est demeuree 
vivante et que la langue a meme mise en relief ; elle montre 
qu'il ne s'agit pas la d'un hebraisme, encore que 1'hebreu 
puisse se rencontrer avec le grec, sur ce point comme sur 
d'autres. 1 

3) Un troisieme fait est le souci, de la part des premiers 
traducteurs slaves des Evangiles, de distinguer Paoriste du 
present, et de rendre le present grec par l'imperfectif 
slave, 1'aoriste grec par le perfectif slave. Deja, A. Meillet 
signalait le fait dans ses Etudes sur 1'Etymologie et le Vocabu- 
laire du Vieux-Slave (Paris, 1902, l<*e Partie, p. 6), et A. 
Mazon en notait 1'importance dans une etude plus 
recente. 2 

4) Enfin, il apparait que les textes evangeliques connaissent 
Vemploi de 1'aoriste avec valeur de present momentane, tel 
qu'il se trouve dans la langue actuelle ; ainsi, on lit dans 
Marc (IV, 1) : /cat TraAtv 7Jparo St8acr/ce> . . . /cat avvayerai 
avrov o^Ao? TrAe terras* ; 1'opposition entre I'aoriste 
et le present crwaycrat qui le suit n'est pas de 
temps, mais d'aspect : la premiere action est indiquee 
comme un simple fait, la seconde est presentee dans son 
developpement. C'est la meme valeur d'aspect de 1'aoriste 
qui se retrouve (III, 20) : tSou 

pretendue concordance des temps , mais il s'agit simplement d'annoncer 
et de noter des evenements qui se presentent dans la trame d'un recit (voir 
plus bas pour le melange des formes de present et d'aoriste). 

1 Cf. H. PERNOT, ibid., p. 199. On a deja vu plus haut que les exemples 
homeriques sont empruntes a des comparaisons ; il faut tenir compte aussi 
du style et des valeurs aflfectives ; les faits neo-grecs n'en sont pas non 
plus exempts. 

2 Cf. A. MAZON, D'une formation verbale slave d'origine greco-turque, 
p. 265 des Melanges Vendryes, Paris, 1925. 

PHILO. TBANS. 1942. D 


/cat cyeveTO ev TOJ aTreipeiv o fiev eTreaev napa TT)V 60 ov, 
/cat r}\Qev TO. TTTLva /cat /caTe'^ayev auT<r /cat aAAo eVeaev 
. . . /cat eu0u? ^avTi\v . . . /cat Ae'yet auTots" . . . o 
GTrelpcov TOV Adyov aTrelpei' OVTOL oe elalv ol Trapa TTJV ooov 
OTTOV o*TTipTai 6 Xoyos, Km oVav aKovo~comv, evdvs epx^Tai 
o 2JaTOLvas /cat aipei TOV Xoyov . . . etc. Chez Luc meme, 
en rencontre des aoristes a valeur de present * (I, 47) : 
T^yaAAtaaev TO Trvevfia (JLOV em T& dew TO) 

(I, 51) : TTO17)GV Kp&TOS . . . OlCGKOpTTrjCreV . . . 

'A<t>a)VTcu de Luc (V, 23) re"pond a d<f>iVTai de Marc (II, 5), 
d</>tofj,ev de Luc (XI, 4) a a^-^/ca/xev de Matthieu. L'opposition 
d'aspect que permet 1'usage du present et de 1'aoriste, rend 
compte du fait que les deux formes sont employees cote a cote 
dans le meme texte; ce n'est pas la une incoherence dans 1'usage 
des temps, mais un jeu naturel des aspects verbaux ; la ou, 
dans les textes eVangeliques, le personnage essentiel a la 
parole, ou encore la ou son discours est d'un interet particulier, 
les mots qu'il prononce sont introduits par Ae'yet, alors 
qu'ailleurs Tauteur de la redaction emploie elrrev (qui n'impli- 
que aucune anteriorite sur Ae'yet) ; ainsi : efs 1 
t7TV avTOJ* StSaa/caAe, aKoXovdirjcra) crot OTTOV eav w 
/cat Aeyet OLVTOJ 6 'Irjaovs' at aAaWe/ces ^ajXeovs e; 
(Matth., VIII/ 19-20) ; /cat Ae'yet CLVTOIS eV e/cetV^ Tfj 
ot/fias r yvojjivr]S' Ste'A0cojLtei> els TO Trepav (Marc, IV, 35-6), 
mais, un peu plus loin (IV, 40) : /cat etTrev auTots" ri SetAot 
eo-Te OVTCDS \ etc. Le meme usage est conserv^ dans la 

1 Cf. BURTON, New Testament Moods and Tenses, 1894; MOULTON 
(Grammar of the Greek of the New Testament) parle d'un aoristic present* ; 
S. ANTONIADIS (ISEvangile de Luc, esquisse de grammaire et de style), citant 
les exemples de Luc, dit : Voici quelques aoristes dont 1'action est simple- 
ment consideree dans son unite, independante de toute condition ; 1'emploi 
de iJyaAAi'aaev TO Trvev^a trouve en grec moderne son equivalent dans la 
formule de politesse x^Ka TTO\V je suis enchante* (cf. plus haut). Peut- 
etre convient-il de se demanderj si la survivance du parfait dans les 
redactions evangeliques (cf. P. CHANTEAINE, op. cit., pp. 229 et suivantes) 
ne repondrait pas au besoin de se servir d'une forme verbale pour le passe, 
afin de permettre a 1'aoriste de tenir lieu d'un present momentan6, s'opposant 
au present continu ou intensif, et a cause, justement, de son emploi. Au 
cours de 1'histoire du grec, le passe a cesse de se situer dans le present pour 
se situer temporellement dans le passe. 


tradition du folklore 1 voir notamment les contes 
populaires d'EFTALiOTis et de DROSINIS , et meme 
dans la litterature narrative ; ainsi KONDYLAKIS ecrit 
("Orav rjfjiovv SaovcaAos 1 , 1916, p. 124) : Tore OLKOVCJ . . . 
[ua <f>a)vr) . . . 7rdyaja TO af/za p,ov voila que j'entends un 
cri . . . mon sang se glace, et KARKAVITSAS (Aoyia rijs 
, 1926, p. 7) : OLKOVOJ rrj <f)ojvr] . . . va f3povrd . . . 
/cat r/ae'^aj mcrca OLTTO rovs vavres j'entends mugir 
la voix . . . j'ai peur et je cours derriere les matelots. 

La langue des papyrus n'atteste pas un usage developpe" 
de cet aoriste 2 ; ceci tient au fait que 1'aoriste dit episto- 
laire s'etait conserve dans les textes papyrologiques par les 
formules, et, d'autre part, au fait que c'est a la fois dans la 
langue litteraire et dans le parler courant que Taoriste 
pre*sentiel a lieu de se rencontrer. 3 Mais ceci n'infirme en 
rien la valeur de 1'aoriste en question, qui est attested 
anterieurement aux papyrus, et apres eux. 

III. Les textes medievaux en connaissent 1'usage. Ainsi, 
on lit dans le AcifjLwv de JEAN Moscnos, 4 n 77 : Aeyet 
/cat a'AAar cru, TTO)? yeyo^a? rtx^Ao? ; aireKpLO^ KOLKCLVOS 
\ya)v . . . Xlyovaw aXXw /ca/cetvot- crv, TTOJS yeyovas rv(f>Xos ; 
6 Se a7TKp{0rj . . . il dit aussi a 1'autre : comment es-tu 
devenu aveugle ? Et il re"pond en disant . . . Eux lui disent : 

1 Les parlers neo-helleniques n'ignorent pas ces emplois ; voici, entre de 
nombreux exemples, un texte de Chypre (KvnpiaKa XpoviKa, 1 annee, 
fascicule V, 1923, p. 154) : Kaovpas e^aaiXet/tev xral rpcoei TOVS avdpwTrovs 
le crabe se replie et devore les homines*. 

2 Cf. MAYSEB, Grammatik der griechischen Papyri aus der Ptolemderzeit, 
1926, t. II, Satzlehre, p. 139 et suivantes ; A. H. SALONIUS, op. cit. 

3 Par exemple (cf. PERNOT-D. HESSELING, Chrestomathie neo-helleniqiie, 
1925, p. 22) un papyrus du 11 siecle porte : eypai/td aoi, qui est plutot une 
formule, ou se conserve 1'aoriste epistolaire, qu'un present immediat 
(cxdpyv TroAAa, Kal avrfjs ajpas a.<f>opp,^v evpwv e-ypa^d aot ravovra ra ypa^ijuara, 
dit le texte). A ce propos, il faut noter que 1'usage litteraire est 
souvent moins eloigne de 1'usage courant qu'on ne serait tente de le 
croire. II s'^carte, au contraire, souvent de 1'usage officiel, ce qui n'est 
pas la meme chose, 1'usage officiel s'eloignant volontairement de 1'usage 
courant : 1'histoire de la question de la langue en Grece eclaire ce point 
(voir : A. MIRAMBEL, Les etats de langue* dans la Grece actuelle (in : Revue 
des Cours et Conferences, Paris, 1937-8). 

4 Cf. H. PERNOT-D. HESSELING, ibid., p. 34. 


comment es-tu devenu aveugle ? Et il re*pond . . . ; on ne 
peut considerer dircKpWr) comme un passe, entre les presents 
Ae'yet et Ae'youcrtj>, mais, la reponse suivant immediatement 
la question, 1'aoriste sert a marquer cette nuance (voila 
qu'il re*pond, il re*pond aussitot). On lit encore dans le 
meme passage, a quelques lignes de distance : d/coAou0o> 
ovv OTTLcrco rov cgoolov Iva 00)pr)cra) TTOV fJieXXovanv OLVTOV 
da,7TTw ot Se rjXdov OTTLCTOJ TOV aylov 'lajdvvov /cat edrjKav 
avTov els jLtv-q/zetov /cat aTTTjXOov je suis derriere le convoi 
afin de voir ou ils vont 1'enterrer ; eux viennent aussitot 
derriere Saint Jean et le mettent au tombeau et s'en 
vont ; le texte marque la difference entre 1'action 
continue (aKoXov9a>) et la serie d'actes mentionnes 
simplement, sans duree (rjX6ov, edrjKav, a7rf)X6ov). Pareille- 
ment, on trouve dans un texte de MICHEL GLYKAS l (vers 

(jxAAo 7rapKt, ov Swa/zat, Kparclj /cat ov 
ftXsvGis, a7rfjp jjie rj x^> r r ' 1 XaXa) OVK 
/3paav rj /capSta JJLOV, vrape/cet ovbev j8aara^a> 

je n'en puis plus, je resiste et je succombe, tu vois, le 
chagrin me tient, je ne sais ce que je dis, mon coeur est bouillant, 
je n'y tiens plus ; les actions marquees par les aoristes 
d-TTTjpe, /3pacrev t sont immediates, et s'opposent a celles que 
marquent d'une maniere continue les presents StW/iat, 
KpaTaJ, VTTOfJieva), AaAcS, e^evpa), ^ao"Ta^a>. 

IV. Ainsi, Temploi de Yaoriste avec valeur de present 
momentane s'est developpe au cours de 1'histoire de la 
langue, pour aboutir a 1'usage actuel. La souplesse de 1'emploi 
de cet aoriste a fait que la langue n'a pas eu besoin de creer 
d'autre systeme pour exprimer une opposition qui se rencontre 
aux autres temps de Tindicatif ; elle a meme permis a 1'aoriste 
de pouvoir exprimer un futur. 

Les raisons qui rendent compte de ce role pris par 1'aoriste 
sont : 

1) le dtveloppement particulier d'une forme qui offrait une 
1 Ibidem, p. 38. 


grande fixite dans le systeme du verbe, comme theme 
d'abord, comme valeur fondamentale ensuite ; de cette 
fixite dans les caracteres essentiels est resultee Tine certaine 
mobilite dans les emplois ; 

2) V elimination de ce qui, dans la forme, n'avait pas valeur 
concrete ; seules les valeurs de cet ordre sont demeurees, et, 
par extension, la langue a pu tirer de la forme le plus grand 

3) Vemploi familier des valeurs temporelles, autres que le 
passe, par I'aoriste ; les exemples, rapportes precedemment, 
montrent que Ton a affaire a des verbes exprimant des opera- 
tions simples et courantes. 

II n'est pas sans interet de noter que, dans les verbes 
transitifs a deux voix (type : xai>o>/xa*>ou//,cu), 1'aoriste 
presentiel au medio-passif a essentiellement une valeur 
passive, en ce qu'il exprime un etat immediat ou une action 
immediatement subie, tandis que le present a normalement 
la valeur d'un reflechi, la distinction entre les deux valeurs 
n'etant pas autrement nette : aco #77*01 je suis sauve, 
suis perdu, JaAiVr-q/ca je suis etourdi, 
je suis epuise, rcraKwdrjKa je suis pris, 
je suis eclaire, KovpdcrrrjKa je suis fatigue, 
en regard de crctoiyz<u je me sauve, je fais mon salut, 
me perds, faAi^oujacu je m'etourdis, 
je me brise, T&aKwvovfjiai je me prends, 
je m'eclaire, Kovpa^ov^ai je me fatigue, 
etc. Ainsi, il s'etablit, en plus de l'aspect, une discrimina- 
tion dans la voix entre deux valeurs passive et reflechie 
, grace a Fopposition des formes du present et de 1'aoriste 
dans le temps present. Ces presents peuvent avoir le 
sens passif, a condition que cette valeur soit precisee par le 
contexte : ^a^ou/xac je suis perdu (OLTTO . . . par . . .) ; 
quant aux aoristes correspondants, c'est lorsqu'ils se referent 
au present qu'ils ont la valeur passive, mais, s'ils se referent 
au passe, ils ont normalement la valeur reflechie et n'expriment 
le passif que si le contexte Findique : x^ r ) Ka <<c j e me 


perdu (au passe") mais je suis perdu* (au present), et 
j'ai 6t6 perdu (OLTTO . . . par . . .), en regard de x^ov/xat 
je me perds ou xavoujLtat (OLTTO) je suis perdu (par) ; 
plus net encore est 1'exemple de CTKOTC^VOJ je tue: crKora)6rjK 
il s'est tue (passe"), mais o7COTo>07?/ce (OLTTO) il a Ste" tue" 
(par), etc. 

Le deVeloppement de 1'aoriste avec valeur de pre"sent 
momentane, et, eVentuellement, de futur imme"diat, a 
breve 6ch6ance, e"claire semble-t-il, la structure du verbe grec 
moderne, et Ton peut degager de ces faits quelques con- 
clusions : 

1) le point de depart s'en trouvait dans le grec ancien ; la 
langue n'a pas en besoin d'innover, de cre"er, il lui a suffi de 
maintenir et de generaliser ; 

2) le grec a ete peu soucieux de systeme au cours de son 
histoire ; le verbe office aujourd'hui le resultat d'un conflit 
de tendances qui a about! a un equilibre, plutot qu'a une totale 
Elimination de certaines au profit d'autres. Dans un ensemble 
domine par des oppositions d'aspect, le temps s'est 
exprime sans avoir jamais pu detruire Taspect, et il est 
toujours demeure subordonn^ a 1'expression de 1'aspect. Le 
temps, en tous cas, n'a jamais trouve en grec d'expression 
qu'a 1'indicatif, et, quand la langue a recre6 un futur, elle 
1'a fait par un precede qui permettait le jeu des aspects ; au 
passe, la distinction existait, la langue 1'a maintenue ; au 
futur, elle 1'a cree"e ; au present, elle 1'a de" veloppee par 1'utilisa- 
tion d'une forme temporellement peu fixee, mais qui e"tait le 
complement du theme de present par 1'aspect. Bref, on ne 
peut concevoir en grec un temps qui serait exprime en 
dehors de l'aspect ; 

3) le grec a toujours fait reposer son verbe sur lejeu d 'aspect 
aoristique/presentiefa. II a, morphologiquement, efface 
toutes les autres oppositions quitte parfois a les reconstituer 
ou a en donner des equivalents a 1'aide d'autres precedes , 
mais il a generalise et developpe 1'opposition du present et 


de Taoriste dans les formes verbales, qui toutes relevent 
necessairement d'un theme ou de 1'autre ; 

4) de toutes les formes verbales, c'est I'aoriste qui, en grec, 
a le mains fix^ sa valeur temporelle. Un theme exprime toujours 
le meme aspect ; une forme est susceptible parfois d'exprimer 
des temps differents, mais a condition que la valeur d'aspect 
demeure la meme. 

Par la se marque la continuite du grec, dans Tel^ment qui 
onre le caractere le plus conservateur de son histoire : le 


THE Avesta was made known in Europe by Anquetil Duperron 
in the second half of the eighteenth century, but remained 
a dead letter until Eugene Burnouf, the great French philolo- 
gist, turned his attention to it. The publication of his Com- 
mentaire sur le Yasna, in 1833, marked the beginning of modern 
Avesta philology. From Burnouf until the end of the century 
the interpretation of the Avesta made great strides. In 1895 
appeared the last volume of Geldner's great edition of the 
text, and in 1904 Bartholomae's dictionary was published 
which ranks among the best dictionaries in the world. Thus, 
at the beginning of the present century, the main work on 
the Avesta seemed to have been done, and there was little 
prospect of further progress. 

This dismal prospect was suddenly changed by the 
unexpected discovery in Central Asia of an enormous number 
of documents written in four previously unknown Middle 
Iranian languages. The oldest of these, from the second 
century of our era, were not far removed from the later parts 
of the Avesta. Thus it was to be hoped that the infinitely 
increased knowledge of the Iranian history, languages, litera- 
tures, and religions, which we owe to these discoveries, would 
greatly contribute to the elucidation of the many peculiar 
features presented by the Avesta, which had to be left 
unexplained owing to the absence of sufficient material. 

However, this hope has been realized only to a limited 
extent. For at the very same time that the first Central 
Asian discoveries came in students of the Avesta began to 

1 A few days after reading this paper to the Philological Society I received, 
through the kindness of the author, Professor H. W. Bailey's book : 
Zoroastrian problems in the ninth-century books (Clarendon Press, 1943). 
In his admirable chapters on " Patvand " and " Den-dipirih " Professor 
Bailey has dealt with the problems discussed in the present paper. It gives 
me pleasure to find that there is a large measure of agreement between his 
views and mine, at least on the more important points. 


follow a road which led them more and more to dissociate 
their work from Middle Iranian Studies. Broadly speaking, 
their work during the last decades was dominated by a 
hypercritical attitude towards the text of the Avesta, and 
by the attempt at reconstructing the supposedly original 
text, while the Middle Iranian Studies in the meantime tended 
to show that the text as it stands is perfectly correct and not 
in need of any reconstruction. 

One of the most important steps on the road to the recon- 
struction of the original Avesta was the metrical theory which 
Geldner advanced in 1877. 1 He found that considerable 
portions of the Younger Avesta, in particular of the Yashts, 
or sacrificial hymns, were poems. In the manuscripts of the 
Avesta there is no distinction of the poetical parts from the 
prose sections. This was a discovery of great value. 

Geldner then proceeded to dissect the text into lines and 
strophes, and noticed soon that the number of syllables that 
went to make up a line was fairly regular, mostly about eight. 
From this he drew the conclusion and in this, I think, he 
was wrong that the lines should have had eight syllables 
regularly in the original text, and that the metrical principle 
of the Younger Avestan verse was a mere counting of syllables. 
In a restricted number of cases he also admitted lines of ten 
or twelve syllables. 

However, it was obvious that among the lines of eight 
syllables there were also lines of six, seven, or nine syllables, 
and in no small number at that. Now, it was well known that 
in Avestan the words were frequently shorter by a syllable 
than the corresponding words of theoretical Old Iranian. 
Thus Geldner was led to assume that at the time when those 
poems had been composed, the language had still approxi- 
mated to theoretical Old Iranian, and that the shorter or 
otherwise deviating forms in the manuscripts were due to 
faulty tradition. In fact, he believed that the existing text 
of the Avesta was corrupt throughout, and this opinion was 
shared by many scholars. 

1 K. Geldner, Ueber die Metrik des Jtingeren Avesta, Tubingen, 1877. 


Let us take an example. Avestan drum corresponds to 
Sanskrit dhruvdm, the Old Iranian form should have been 
*druvam. Wherever drum occurred in an apparently catalectic 
line Geldner restored druvam, and thus made up the number 
of syllables to eight. 

Here one must remark that even if one accepted Geldner's 
theory of the eight-syllable line it would not necessarily 
follow that the text was corrupt, and that the poets actually 
had said druvam instead of drum. For the difference of an 
ordinary u from an u due to the coalescence of two vowels 
may have persisted in the pronunciation, probably in the 
intonation, and therefore drum may have counted as a word 
of two syllables. 1 

Geldner developed a whole set of rules for the substitution 
of Old Iranian forms in lines which seemed to be short of a 
syllable or two. But he had to admit a great number of 
exceptions, namely, wherever the lines had already the desired 
number of syllables. 2 He also allowed himself some licence 
in introducing forms which were justified neither by the 
traditional text, nor by Old Iranian or Sanskrit. Thus he 
vindicated three syllables to words such as uyra : Sanskrit 
ugrd, mahrka 3 : Sanskrit markd, zaodra- : Sanskrit hotra,* 
drafsa, 5 nmdna, 6 raoxsna? and so on, 8 but this should apply 
only where occasion demanded. Still more daring were his 
attempts at reducing verses of nine syllables to eight. Here 
he had recourse to such questionable expedients as reading 
dugSardm : Sanskrit duhitdram, or hvanhar&m : Skt. svdsdram 

1 Cf. Wackernagel, Altindische Grammatik, i, 45 (pp. 50 sq.). 

2 Geldner, p. 10 : mazda = 2 or 3 syll. ; p. 11 : ma = 1 or 2 syll. ; 
p. 12 : g%uS = 1 or 2 syll. ; p. 13 : k9nsaspa, vistaspa, etc. = 3 or 4 syll. ; 
pp. 16 sq. : zam = 1 or 2 syll. ; pp. 34 sq. : -amna- = 2 or 3 syll. ; p. 24 : 
freedom in use of -y- and -v- as -uv~ and -iy- ; etc. 

Ibid., p. 37. 
Ibid., p. 35. 
Ibid., p. 37. 
lbid. t p. 36. 
Ibid., p. 31. 

Ibid., p. 33, adrat trisyllabic, gfttffn* trisyllabic ; p. 38 : " restitution " 
of the augment. 


as disyllabic words, 1 or as reducing by a syllable the ending 
of the Nom. Plur. of i- and w-stems, -ayo and -avo, in Skt. 
-ay as and -avas. 2 

Owing to the considerable latitude which Geldner had 
allowed himself, his theories met with little response. In fact 
it is not too much to say that his book rather had the effect 
of discouraging any further study of the Avestan metrics. 

Geldner himself, in his edition of the text of the Avesta, 
took less notice of the metres than one would have expected. 
Therefore, it may seem rather unnecessary to discuss the 
merits of his suggestions now. That, however, is not so. For 
in more recent times they have seen an unexpected revival. 
Actually the belief in the eight-syllable line, and in the counting 
of syllables as the principle of the Avestan verse, seems to be 
one of the not too numerous points on which the students of 
the Avesta are agreed. How this has come about I am at a 
loss to say. For Geldner's demonstration was, I think, 
manifestly unsatisfactory, and there has been no attempt since 
at re-establishing his ideas on a more secure basis. 

We now have to consider the reconstruction of the so-called 
Arsacid text of the Avesta, which is associated with the 
name of the late Professor Andreas. Since I owe my initiation 
into this subject to Andreas, it is painful to me to find myself 
compelled to disagree with him on this problem, perhaps one 
of the most important points in the field of Iranian Studies. 
However, I think he would have been the first to scrap his 
own theory, had he been allowed to see the flood of fresh 
Middle Iranian material which has become available only in 
recent years. For at the time when he first propounded his 
ideas, in 1902, only one Middle Iranian dialect, the Pahlavi 
language, was known, and this lack of information had 
inevitably the consequence that the picture of the linguistical 
development of Iranian was somewhat distorted. 

The existing text of the Avesta, which is commonly referred 

1 Ibid., p. 51. 

8 Ibid., p. 53 ; cf. also the restitution of -a in the place of -am (p. 52), 
the contraction of -anqm to -aw (pp. 53 sq.), and the " Samdhi " (pp. 54 sqq.). 


to as the vulgate text, or the traditional text, is written in an 
unusually elaborate and precise script. There are fourteen 
characters for the vowels alone, and altogether forty-eight. 
This contrasts with the other scripts used in Iran in ancient 
times, all of which derive from the Aramaic script of twenty- 
two letters (not counting cuneiform Old Persian, the Indian 
Brahmi used for Khotanese and Maralbasi Saka, Turkish 
runes, and Chinese for Middle Persian and Parthian, and 
similar exceptions). Of these comparatively few letters some 
were not even employed : thus, the Iranian parts of Pahlavi 
were written with only nineteen characters, and the Sogdians 
managed with not more than seventeen. 

These scripts share the peculiar character of the Aramaic 
alphabet in expressing only the consonants, at least in theory. 
In practice, the letters Aleph, Yod, and Waw, which primarily 
represent the consonants : Glottal stop, y, and w, are used 
also for the vowels. Such was also the script in which Pahlavi 
was written, the Middle Iranian language which was used in 
Persia in Sassanian times (third to seventh century), but also 

Now, the elaborate Avestan script with its forty-eight 
characters was introduced or invented at some time during 
the Sassanian period, possibly in the fourth century. But if 
the Avesta had been committed to, let us say, leather, before 
that time (and the Zoroastrian tradition affirms that that 
had been done), the script used for it can have been only the 
Pahlavi script, or at least one of similar character. 

Andreas believed that such an earlier text, written in a 
simple script of the Pahlavi type, had indeed existed, and 
that it had been transliterated into the elaborate Avestan 
script, which had been created because the ambiguity inherent 
in the older system of writing had more and more endangered 
the understanding of the sacred books. For convenience' sake 
the earlier text has been called the " Arsacid " text, because 
it is supposed to have been written down first during the half 
millennium when Persia was ruled by the Arsacid or Parthian 
kings, before the Sassanian period. 


Andreas thought it possible to reconstruct the Arsacid 
text, with the help of the palaeographic analysis of the Avestan 
script, which in common with most scholars he believed to 
have been developed from the Pahlavi script. The regular 
substitution of a fixed character for each letter or group of 
letters in the traditional text, should produce the earlier text 
quite mechanically. The thus reconstructed Arsacid text 
should form the sole basis for our study of the Avesta, while 
the vulgate text constituted merely an interpretation of the 
original, which we were at liberty to accept or reject. 

For the transliterators, he maintained, had been a bunch 
of ignoramuses, who had had at their disposal no information 
worth mentioning beyond the Arsacid text. They had done 
their work mechanically, but thanks to this mode of pro- 
ceeding we were enabled to reconstitute the older text, 
which so to speak inhered in the traditional text. Their 
main mistake lay in assimilating the ancient language to 
their own Middle Iranian form of speech. We ought to take 
no notice of their reading, but interpret the Arsacid text in 
agreement with the Sanskrit grammar and the principles of 
comparative philology. 

In so far as the form of the words in the original Avestan 
language is concerned the new method endorsed the results 
which Geldner had reached with the help of metrical con- 
siderations. Let us take the same example we had used 
before : for Avestan drum Geldner had substituted druvam 
because in his opinion the metre demanded a disyllabic 
word. Andreas said that drum reflected the spelling D-R-W-M 
in the Arsacid text, and that we should consider how a word 
spelled in this way should be read, without being deflected 
by the phonetic interpretation which the traditional text 
offered. Since our reading should aim at producing a properly 
Old Iranian form, in accord with the Sanskrit grammar, we 
obviously had no choice but to read druvam. 

Before describing the effect which this theory had on the 
development of the Avestic Studies, I should like to state 
what objections can be raised against it. It is clear that the 


acceptance of the whole theory depends on what credit we 
can give to its three basic points : Firstly, that the Arsacid 
text ever existed. Secondly, that it was transliterated, in the 
way Andreas postulated. Thirdly, that the transliterators 
were very ignorant people. The most important of these points 
is the third : For, to revert to our example, even if we agreed 
that there had been a word spelled D-R-W-M in an Arsacid 
text, and that it had been transliterated as drum, we still 
might consider that the transliterators were justified in 
writing as they did, and in refusing to adorn their manu- 
scripts with genuinely Old Iranian forms. 

Firstly, that the Arsacid text ever existed. The Zoroastrian 
tradition relates that the Avesta had been written down 
already before Alexander, and that the surviving books had 
been collected by a Parthian king by name of Vologasus. 
However, since the reliability of this tradition is under review, 
it will be better to disregard it altogether for the moment. 
Actually, it has been doubted whether the Avesta has been 
written even in far later times, before the end of the Sassanian 
period, but such extreme views need not detain us. 

But if we want to establish the history of the Avesta from 
non-Zoroastrian statements only, we must bear in mind that 
at best we cannot expect very much. If in writing the history 
of the early Christian literature one had to rely solely on non- 
Christian and anti-Christian reports, the picture would be 
neither complete nor correct. 

There are no Greek or Roman accounts that in any way 
could be regarded as conclusive. Pliny tells us that Hermippus, 
the author of a book on the Magi, who lived in the third 
century before our era, had written a commentary on 
Zoroaster's verses, in which he had given a table of the 
contents of his volumina* 

More valuable perhaps is what Pausanias relates in his 
Description of Greece. 2 In describing the well-known Zoroastrian 
ceremony of re-kindling the sacred fire from the ashes, he 

1 C. Clemen, Fontes Hist. Eelig. Pen., p. 42. 

2 Loc. cit., pp. 62 sq. 


mentions casually that the Magian priest while reciting some 
invocations in a barbarian language, read them out of a book. 
Unfortunately, it was in Lydia, rather a long way from Persia, 
that Pausanias observed 2 that ceremony, although on the 
other hand he says that the temple in question belonged to 
the " Lydians who are surnamed Persian ". 2 Also, it would 
be rather irregular for a Magian priest to read his invocations ; 
he ought to know them by heart. 

In view of the somewhat unsatisfactory nature of these 
references, it is fortunate that recently an unambiguous 
statement has come to light, which is all the more valuable 
for originating from a hostile witness. The witness I mean is 
Mani who was born in the year 216, in the reign of the last 
Arsacid king, and who spent most of his life in Persia under 
the first kings of the Sassanian dynasty. In one of the 
Manichsean books in the Coptic language which were discovered 
in Egypt in 1930, Mani says 3 : " Zoroaster came to King 
Hystaspes and preached in Persia, and selected just and 
righteous disciples. . . . However, he did not write any books. 
But his disciples after his death remembered (his words) 
and wrote the books which they read to-day." 

This, I think, is perfectly clear. If the Zoroastrians had had 
to rely merely on oral tradition, Mani would have been 
delighted to say so. For the point he wants to make is that 
the Sacred Scriptures of all religions other than his own 
were of dubious authority, because they had not been com- 
posed by the founders of the religions themselves. The written 
Avesta was, in the eyes of Mani, a well-known and long- 
established fact, obviously not a recent innovation. There is, 
therefore, no doubt that the Arsacid text of the Avesta 
existed. Incidentally, the Zoroastrian tradition on this 
subject is confirmed. 

We now come to the second point, the question whether 
the ancient Arsacid text has been transliterated into the 
elaborate Avestan alphabet. It is important to realize that 
the assumption of such a transliteration is by no means a 

ofSa. 2 AvBotsernKXijaivIJepaiKOis. 8 Kephalaia, p. 7, 27-33. 


necessity. The Zoroastrian tradition whose predominant 
interest lay in proving the continuity of the textual history, 
is silent on this point, and this, I think, goes a long way to 
show that there was no such transliteration. 

The tradition merely says that the Avesta has several times 
been burned and dispersed, but collected again later, and 
that the last great collection took place during the Sassanian 
period. It has been suggested l that the word " collection " 
here means : " collection of the oral tradition," and this 
seems to be the correct solution. There is no doubt that the 
oral transmission of the Avesta, from teacher to pupil, was 
an important factor in the history of the sacred books. 2 

It would therefore be reasonable to suppose that when in 
Sassanian times the need for a new collection made itself 
felt the new Avestic script was invented, and the various 
texts were written in it at the dictation of carefully selected 
priests who were believed to have preserved the ancient texts 
best. Whether those priests found it necessary to refresh 
their memories by looking up old manuscripts, we shall 
never know. 

Whatever the truth may be in this question, I have no 
doubt that in no way can we hope to restore the Arsacid text 
on the ground of any palaeographic analysis of the Avestan 
script. After Andreas there has been another such attempt 3 
with different results in almost every point. The reason for 
this divergence of views is not far to seek. It is simply this, 
that the Avestan script is by nature a poor field for palaeo- 
graphic studies. For the Avestan script is not the result of 
slow development in the course of centuries. It was some- 
thing entirely new, a departure from the customary system 
of writing. In one word, it was an invention. Therefore, 
at best we could only find out what was in the mind of the 
inventor or the inventors and that would seem rather a 
hopeless task. 

1 Cf. Nyberg, Eel Alt. Iran, 424. 

2 This point has now been fully discussed by Bailey, Zor. Probl., 149 sqq. 
8 H. Junker, Caucasica, ii (1925), 1-92, iii (1926), 82-139. 


That the Avestan script is an invention is clear also from 
internal evidence. Until more recent times it had never been 
doubted, and in fact it is obvious, that the starting-point for 
the inventor was the ordinary Pahlavi script of Sassanian 
times, which was different from the Pahlavi script of our 
manuscripts only in a few minor points. 1 Wherever the 
Pahlavi script was clear its characters were adopted by the 
inventor. This affects nearly all Pahlavi letters. But wherever 
Pahlavi was ambiguous, or lacked a letter, new characters 
were invented. 

The third point was the ignorance of the transliterates, 
or, we should say, the priests who wrote down the traditional 
text. Since the original text is supposed to have been different 
from the present Avesta in almost every word their ignorance 
must have been boundless indeed. However, one cannot help 
noticing that the changes which distinguish the language of 
the traditional Avesta from theoretical Old Iranian, are fairly 
regular, and in fact have the character of phonetical laws. 
This ought not to have been so, had these changes been 
due merely to mistakes in transliteration. Thus one is led 
to suppose that the language of the Avesta was a real language, 
as distinct from a paper language. 

But this is a quarrel of a hundred years' standing, in which 
we are unlikely to get very far with general considerations. 
There is only one way of establishing the genuineness of the 
Avestan language. Namely, it is argued that the so-called 
mistakes are due mainly to the influence of that language which 
the transliterators themselves spoke, i.e. Pahlavi or Middle 
Persian. But if we can show that changes which distinguish 
Avestan from Old Iranian and Middle Persian alike, are 
shared by other Iranian dialects, this should be regarded as 

Such cases can indeed be proved with the help of the fresh 

1 This has been established by C. Salemann, Ueber eine Paraenhandschrift 
.... (vol. ii des Travaux de la 3 e session du Congres International des 
Orientalistes, 1876). His results have in no way been shaken by Junker's 

PHILO. TRANS. 1942. E 


Middle Iranian Material. Let us take the shortening of long 
vowels in front of y or w. For Sanskrit chdyd, Old Iranian 
say a, " shadow," we have sdyag in Middle Persian, and sdye in 
Persian. But in Avestan it is saya, and this shortening of the 
first d is shared by Sogdian sayak? Ormuri sydk a , Pashto 

Similarly before a w. Skt. ndvdja, Olr. ndwdza " a sailor ", 
is ndwdz in MPers. and Parthian, but nawdza in the Avesta 
and nawdz (nw"z) in Sogdian. 2 

A characteristic case is Skt. jiva-, Olr. }lwa- " to live ". 
In OPers. it is fiwa-, in Parth. fiw-, in MPers. zlw-, in Pers. 
ziy-. But in Av. the 1 disappears, and this has happened 
also in Sogd. zw-, in Pashto zw- t Yaghnobi zu~, Khotanese 
ju-. 3 On the basis of Andreas' theory there is no way of 
explaining convincingly why the transliterators should 
persistently have written }w- for Olr. fiw- in face of ziw- 
in their own language. 

One could mention a considerable number of such differences, 
but I think a single one is sufficient to prove that this language 
is not merely a huge mistake. In this investigation we are 
somewhat hampered by the absence of any modern dialects 
in precisely that region which must be considered to have 
been the home of the authors of the Avesta, the region from 
the Hamun lake in the south to the oasis of Merv in the 
North and to Balkh, the ancient Bactra, in the North-East. 4 

1 = 1. " shadow ", 2. " canopy, pavilion ". Persian sdye also has the 
second meaning, cf. Farsndme, Introd., p. xxix. In Jewish Persian sdye 
renders Hebrew sukkdh " booth " (Is. 1, 8 ; 4, 6 ; etc.) and mlundh " hut " 
(Is. 24, 20). 

8 Or Av. asavan, Zoroastr. Pahl. dhlaw (Man. 'hlw) : Skt. rtdvan-, OPers. 
artdvan-, Sogd. artdw, MPers., Parth. arddw, Pahlavi ardd. But Av. 
aSavasta- : Sogd. artosp- (dissimilated as Bal. gidisp, Ormuri jusp). 

3 For determining the position of Avestan among its fellow Iranian 
dialects, this point has no less weight than the arguments which led Tedesco, 
Le Monde Oriental, xv, 256 sq., to the conclusion that Avestan belonged 
to the North- Western group. I do not see how one can dismiss it, "la 
langue de 1' A vesta etant un dialecte du Nord-Ouest " (Tedesco, Bull. Soc. 
Ling., 25, 57). 

4 Cf. Morgenstierne, Report on a Linguistic Mission to Afghanistan, 1926, 
pp. 28 qq. ; differently Indo-Iranian Frontier Languages, vol. ii, p. 24, n. 1. 


From the dialectological point of view the language of the 
Avesta takes its place between the Western Iranian dialects 
as spoken in present-day Persia, and the Eastern dialects on 
the Indian frontier and to the North of the River Oxus. 

The theory of Andreas has sometimes been described as the 
" starting-point for the modern Avesta-philology ". Many 
eminent scholars, Benveniste, Duchesne, B. Geiger, L. H. 
Gray, Lommel, Meillet, Wackernagel, and many others have, 
at some time or other, accepted it in a more or less modified 
form. It has been elaborated and developed in various ways. 

For example, one has assumed that there may have been 
several independent transliterations of the Arsacid text which 
were reflected in the various readings of our manuscripts. 
One has also spoken of various readings in the Arsacid text. 
One has thought to discover cases where the transliterators 
had misread the Arsacid text. Further, it has been suggested 
that the scribes of the Arsacid text had confused letters of 
similar shape, but this would seem a rather unsafe way of 
proceeding since nobody can possibly say what the script of 
the Arsacid text was like. Finally, for explaining passages 
in late Avestan books the language of which is in no way up 
to the standard of Old Iranian, one has supposed that perhaps 
the endings of the words had altogether been omitted in the 
Arsacid text, and that the existing endings had been added by 
the transliterators. 1 

But the most important development was the union of the 
transliteration theory with the metrical principles of Geldner. 
On the one hand, the help of the " transliterated " text gave 
fall freedom in reading the separate words. On the other hand, 
the eight-syllable metrics provided a means of adding and 
omitting words and syllables. The combination of both 
methods has served to transform the text of the Avesta in 
a fashion which I believe is unparalleled in other branches of 

In all this far too little attention has been paid to the 
soundness of the basis, which has mostly been taken for 

1 Cf. Lommel, ZII., i, 195 sqq., vi, 126 sqq. 


granted. The consequence is that at present the students of 
the Avesta are split into two groups each of which takes little 
or no notice of the results of the other. 

At the beginning of this paper I pointed out that Geldner's 
metrical theories 1 did not work out quite satisfactorily. 
At its end, I feel I ought to make an alternative sugges- 

Let us cast a glance at the newly-discovered remains of 
Middle Iranian poetry, of which the oldest, the Parthian 
poems of the third and fourth centuries, are in point of time 
not too far removed from the later portions of the Avesta. 
All Middle Iranian poetry, Middle Persian, Parthian, and 
Khotanese, 2 has this feature in common that the number of 
syllables to a line is variable. The important point throughout 
is the number of stressed syllables. 

Here I take into account only those poems that are divided 
into lines in the manuscripts. They alone can provide a secure 
basis for metrical studies. For it is true, the hypothetical 
Avestan metrics have been applied also to Pahlavi books in 
which the text is not divided into lines, but in doing so one 
was forced to the notion that the Pahlavi texts, too, were 
corrupt throughout and had to be emended continually. The 
assumption that the principle of the Middle Iranian verse 
was the constant number of stressed syllables, 3 is in accord 
with the general character of the Middle Iranian languages 
which, as is well known, were dominated by a stress of great 
intensity. 4 

1 They have been elaborated also by J. Hertel (Beitrdge zur Metrik des 
Awestas und des Rgvedas, 1927) whose opinions I fear I cannot share. 
Musical rhythm formed the basis of the Avestan (and Vedic) metres 
according to H. Weller, ZII., i (1922), 115 sqq. 

2 On Khotanese (Saka) metres see St. Konow, NTS., vii, pp. 7 sqq. ; 
xi, pp. 6 sq. 

8 See my paper in NGGW., 1933, p. 317. Of. Christensen, Les Gestes des 
Eois dans les traditions de Vlran antique, Paris, 1936, pp. 46 sqq. 

4 On stress in Iranian see Meillet, Journ. As., 1900, i, 254-277 ; Gauthiot, 
Mem. Soc. Ling., xx, 1916, 1-25; Tedesco, ZII., ii (1923), 302, n. 4; 
Morgenstierne, Report . . . Afghanistan, p. 17 n. ; Reichelt, Iranisch (Ges- 
chichte der indogermanischen Sprachwissenschaft, vol. iv), 46 sq. ; H. Hirt, 


The favourite type of verse has lines of either three or four 
stressed syllables, the number of unstressed syllables being 
free. 1 The line of three arses comprised between five and ten 
syllables, as a rule, but in this case the average number was 
seven or eight. 2 It seems to me that the verse of the Younger 
Avesta is in no way different from the Middle Iranian line of 
three stressed syllables. Already Geldner 3 had noticed that 
80 per cent of those lines which he recognized as metrical 
contained either three words or three words and a proclitic 
or enclitic monosyllable, but unfortunately he did not draw 
any conclusion from this fact. 

So it may seem advisable to abandon Geldner's metrical 
scheme. With it, the need for emending not only countless 
passages, but the whole of the language, will disappear. I do 
not mean to say that the text of the Avesta should not be 
emended here and there. There are probably just as many 
corrupt passages as in any other book of equal antiquity. 
But I do mean that there is no justification for emending 
every word of it. 

Akzent, 1929, 193-8. A remarkable study of the stress in Parachi was given 
by Morgenstierne, IIFL., i, 30 sqq. Within the accentuation theory proposed 
by Meillet and Gauthiot, it is difficult to see why some words should be 
derived from the nominative, and others from the generalized genitive of 
-a- stems. Moreover, the extension of the genitive in -ahya can hardly be 
applied to the Eastern Iranian dialects. But Persian by itself presents 
difficulties, cf. (nouns) paig < pddika, MPers. ba$n < bdzina-, but takuS 
< 6akua ; (adjectives) pahn < pddana, zard < zdrita, but tanuk from 
tanuka ; an unpleasant case is navdd < navdti (instead of *naud). In 
comparing several Iranian languages one finds striking cases of divergent 
development. E.g. Parthian az < dzam, but Chr. Sogd. zu, Pashto zd < 
azdm ; Persian mur-y < mfga, but Sogd. Khwar. (a)mya < mrgd ; Pers. 
kard < Icfta-, but Sogd. kti (Nom.) < krtdh, ktu < krtdm ; Pers. navdd, 
but Saka nautd, notd < ndvati ; Pers. pahn, but Pashto plan < paOdna. 
Noteworthy is Olr. updri which throughout had stress on the second 
syllable, against Meillet's rule, but in conformity with the Vedic accent 
MPers. abdr, Pers. bar, Sogd. par (probably also Pashto par), Saka mrd. 

1 Cf. Old Icelandic poetry. 

2 See especially the Khotanese Rama poem, published by Bailey, BSOS. , 
x, 365-376. On its metre see Bailey, JAOS., 59, 461. 

* Loc. cit., p. viii. 



1. Three stresses to a line. Avestan. 1 

Y. 11, 6. noit ahmi nmdne zdnaite 8 2 

a"0rava naeSa raflaesta 8 

naeSa v&stryo fsuyas 6 

Yt. 10, 103. yim haratdramca aiwyaxSta'ramc'a 10 

fradaflat Ahuro Mazda 8 

vispaya fravois gaeflaya 8 

yo harataca aiwyaxstaca .... 8 

yo anavammabdamno zaenaha 10 

nipaiti Mazda daman .... 7 

nisMurvaiti Mazda daman 8 

Yt. 10, 39 sq. isavascit aesam erazifyo . parana 11 

huflaxtat haca ^anvanat 8 

Jiya.jatanho vazamna .... 8 

arstayascit aesam Mxsnuta 9 

tiyra daraya-arstaya .... 7 

zarstvacit aesam fradaxsanya 9 

vazamna haca bazubyo .... 8 

karatacit aesam hufrayuxta 9 

yoi niyraire sarahu masyakanam 11 

Yt. 10, 30 sq. yasa.0wa aoxto . namana yasna 9 

raflwya vaca yazaite 7 

baro.zao^ro asava 7 

aoxto . namana 0wa yasna 8 

raflwya vaca sura 6 

Mi0ra yazai zao^rabyo .... 7 

ra#wya vaca savista .... 7 

raflwya vaca a8aoyamna 8 

1 The accents are meant merely to indicate which words I imagine were 
stressed ; so far it is impossible to say, with any degree of certainty, which 
syllable of a word bore the stress. 

2 Approximate number of syllables. It is a feature of the Avestan language 
that the delimitation of " syllables " is uncertain and subject to fluctuation. 
This fact by itself runs counter to the current belief that the syllable is the 
determining unit in the Avestan poetry. 


Yt. 10, 17. y6 noit kahmai aiwi . draoxSo 8 

noit nmanahe nmano.patae 9 

noit viso vispatae 7 

noit zantaus zantupatae 8 

Yt. 10, 50. ya0ra noit xsapa noit tama 8 

noit aoto v^to noit garamo 8 

noit axtis pouru . mahrko 7 

noit ahitis daevo . data 8 

naeSa x dunman uzjasaiti 8 

haraiflyo paiti barazaya 8 

2. Three stresses to a line. Parthian (Mir. Man., iii, g, 
201 sqq.). 2 

'Az r6sn ud yazdan hem 6 

'Ud izdeh bud hem az hawin 8 

'Amwast abar man dusmanln 8 

'Usan au murdan idwast hem 8 

Bag hem ke zad az bagan 7 

Bamen humaydst ud nisag 8 

Brazag xumboy ud huzihr 7 

Bid awas gad hem au niyaz 8 

Grift hem anasag ismagan 8 

Gastgaran ke kerd hem warad 3 8 

Griw wxebeh namr k6rd 5 

Gast angafad ud wxard hem 7 

Dewan yaxsan ud parig 7 

Duzarus tarig azdahag 8 

Durcihr gandag ud syaw 6 

Dardum was maran did az hawin 9 

Average : 7-4 

1 In studying the Gathas (which are outside the purview of this paper) 
Meillet observed that naeSa was stressed, while noit could be proclitic. 
This holds good also for the Younger Avesta. See Journ. As., 1900, i, 
276 sq. Lommel, ZII., vi, 141 sqq., " emends." 

2 Cf. also Mir. Man., iii, g 1-81. 

8 = " prisoner ". Cf. Av. varaidya-, etc. 


3. Four stresses to a line, with a rythmical pause after the 
second. Middle Persian (M 83/2 -f M 235 : " canon " 
and additional verses here omitted ; caesura marked 
in the MSB.). 

Afrin new ud istayisn 
Ba'n tahmataran 
Gehban x wigrad 
Dosarmlgar i new 
Hanzaman ozaxt 
Wizidagih abzr 
Z6ridan abzawad 
Hamew istayihed 
Tahmih padired 
Yazdegerdih ud istayisn 
Xudawan Yiso' 
Rosniha warenad 
Man! xudawan 
NerogayenM pad wehih 
Sag i wisp istayisn 
Az hamag yazdegerdih 
Paiwazedum o wang 
Cunum az nox ud fratum 
[Qarjed? drtid ud ramisn 
Ramened o xwastigaran 
Sadih abzayed 
Taxtiha warened 

frestag^n i wuzargih 
ud pasbanan i den 
Kaftmus sarar 
Yaq6b Nariman 

1 Mahrespandan new^n 
ud den i xwastih 

az pidar bay-Zerw^n 
az hamag wuzargih 
az ba'^n i barist 
az zor^n i wuzargih 
sarar i frestagan 
o asma tahman 
pus i wuzargih 
o asma xwabaran 
ud afrin i zindag 
o asma farruxan 
um bawed frayadag 
pad z6r i abzar 
pad wispan sahran 
ud sraxsened 6 doyan 2 
o rayenagan i xwastih 
6 wispan hurwanan 3 
Average : 

7 + 8 


6 + 6 


4 + 5 


6 + 5 


5 + 7 


6 + 5 


6 + 6 


6 + 6 


5 + 6 


8 + 7 


5 + 6 


6 + 5 


5 + 5 


8 + 6 


6 + 6 


7 + 6 


6 + 6 


7 + 5 


6 + 5 


8 + 7 


5 + 8 


6 + 6 


6-1 + 6 


1 = " shepherd " (not " welthiiter "), cf. the meaning of Pashto yele. 

2 Var. lect. dewan ; cf. BSOS., ix, 82. doy from daitoya- ? 

3 A profusion of similar Parthian verses has been published. For example, 
lines with two stresses : Mir.Man., iii, g 169-200. Lines with four stresses : 
ibid., m 50-62 ; n 16-36. Strophes with two lines, four stresses each, and 
caesura after the second : ibid., d, e ; Waldschmidt-Lentz, Stdlung Jesu, 
112 sqq. Strophes : 4 + 4 + 4 + 3, Mir Man., iii, text , etc. 


During the year 1941 the Society held only one ordinary 
meeting, the Anniversary meeting on 1st May, when after 
the usual business Mr. Yoshitake introduced a discussion 
on Numerals especially numbers of two digits. As on other 
occasions the Society enjoyed the Hospitality of the School 
of Oriental and African Studies, and it is a gainer by the 
opening of the School's new buildings at the University of 

The year 1941 saw little progress made with publications 
owing in part to the preoccupation of the Publications 
Secretary with work of national importance. Arrangements 
made since the end of the year have overcome some difficulties ; 
Transactions 1940 have passed the final proof stage, some 
material for the next issue has gone to press and, while 
Professor Thomas's Nam-text is still delayed, Dr. L. R. 
Palmer's Grammar of Post-Ptolemaic Papyri is now in the press. 

With three new members, one of them from U.S.A., and 
three resignations there were 177 names on the membership 
list for 1941. Twelve of these members, however, are in 
enemy or occupied countries and there are some two dozen 
other subscriptions still unpaid ; several of these are due 
from libraries which will pay arrears when they receive our 

This report cannot omit a reference to the great loss just 
sustained by the death of the last President, Professor R. W. 

J. R. FIRTH \Joint Honorary 
May, 1942. A - WOODWARD/ Secretaries. 








COUNCIL 1942-43 


Vice- Presidents 

PROF. F. W. THOMAS, C.I.E., M.A., PH.D., F.B.A. 
C. T. ONIONS, C.B.E., M.A., D.LITT., LITT.D., LL.D., F.B.A. 
PROF. R. G. KENT, Ph.D. 

Ordinary Members of Council 





MISS M. D. LEGGE, M.A., B.Litt. 


L. R. PALMER, M.A., PH.D. 



J. A. STEWART, C.I.E., M.C., 

M.A., LL.D. 


Hon. Treasurer 

PROF. R. L. TURNER, M.C., M.A., LiTT.D., Haverbrack, Bishop's 
Stortford, Herts. 

Hon. Secretaries 

J. R. FIRTH, M.A., 25 Boxwell Road, Berkhamsted, Herts. 
(for Publications) 

MISS A. WOODWARD, M.A., Royal Holloway College, Englefield Green, 

(to whom all secretarial correspondence should be addressed) . 

MESSRS. BARCLAY & CO., LTD., 1 Pall Mall East, S.W. 1. 

Entrance Fee, 1 Is. ; Subscription, 1 Is. a year (due 1st January), 
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(Corrected to January, 1944) 

%* Members are reminded that it is only by their active assistance that 
the List of Members can be kept up to date. They are earnestly requested 
to call attention to existing errors, and to give timely notification of changes 
of address, titles, and degrees to the Hon. Secretary, Mrss A. WOODWARD, 
M.A., Royal Holloway College, Englefield Green, Surrey. 

An asterisk prefixed to a name denotes Life Membership, 
t Awaiting election 


HUJER, Professor 0., Universita, Praha I, Czechoslovakia. 

PEDEBSEN, Professor H., Gersonsvej 69", Copenhagen-Hi., 

SOMMERFELT, Professor A., Royal Norwegian Ministry of Educa- 
tion, Kingston House, Princes Gate, S.W. 7. 


1940. AQUILINA, Professor Joseph, B.A., LL.D., c/o Royal 
University, Valletta, Malta. 

1929. ATKINSON, B. F. C., M.A., Ph.D., College House, Grange 

Road, Cambridge. 

1931. BAILEY, Professor H. W., M.A., D.Phil., Queens' College, 


1901. BANKS, Mrs. M. M., 19 St. Margaret's Road, Oxford. 
1934. BAZELL, C. E., M.A., Magdalen College, Oxford. 
1944. BECK, A. K., LL.D., 12 Buxton Avenue, Caversham, 

Nr. Reading. 

1930. BERGIN, Professor 0., Ph.D., D.Litt., 10 Grosvenor Place, 

Rathmines, Dublin. 

1934. BERNARD, T. Casimir, B.A., LL.B., 101 East 94th Street, 

New York City, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1935. BLACKMAN, Mrs. E., M.A., Uppercross, Storey's Way, 


1936. BLOMFIELD, Miss J. E., B.A., B.Litt., Somerville College, 


1934. BOSTOCK, J. Knight, M.A., B.Litt., Ph.D., 5 St. Margaret's 

Road, Oxford. 
1926. BRAUNHOLTZ, Professor G. E. K., M.A., 78 Old Road, 

Headington, Oxford. 
1936. BROOKS, K. R., M.A., D.Phil., Merton College, Oxford. 

1932. BRYSON, J. N., M.A., 94 High Street, Oxford. 

1935. BURROW, T., M.A., Ph.D., Dept. of Oriental Printed 

Books and MSS., British Museum, W.C. 1. 

1936. BUTLIN, R. T., B.A., c/o The British Council, Cairo, Egypt. 

1932. CAMPBELL, A., B.A., B.Litt., 11 Marston Ferry Road, 


1943. CAMPBELL, I. M., M.A., Balliol College, Oxford. 

1936. CAWLEY, A. C., B.A., Lowell House, G-22, 50 Holyoke 

Street, Cambridge, Mass., U.S.A. 
1920. CHATTERJI, S. K., M.A., D.Lit., 16 Hindustani Park, 

P.O. Baliganj, Calcutta, India. 
1928. CHOTZEN, T. M., Litt.D., 4 Meloenstr., The Hague, 


1923. COLLINSON, Professor W. E., M.A., Ph.D., 58 Alderley 

Road, Hoylake, Wirral, Cheshire. 
1902. CRAIGIE, Professor Sir William A., M.A., LL.D., D.Litt., 

Ridgehurst, Christmas Common, Watlington, Oxon. 
1939. CREWS, Mrs. M. G., Girton College, Cambridge. 

1935. DAHL, Professor Torsten, Universitetsparken, Aarhus, 

1934. D'ARDENNE, Miss S., B.Litt., 57 rue J.-B. Colyns XL, 

Brussels, Belgium. 
1934. DAUNT, Miss M., M.A., 73a Elsham Road, Kensington, 


1939. *DAVIES, H. Lloyd, Dinnle, Gardden, Ruabon near 


1924. DAWKINS, Professor R. M., M.A., Exeter College, Oxford. 
1913. *DAY, Miss M., M.A., D.Lit., 15 Elgin Court, Maida Hill, 

W. 9. 
1934. DICKINS, Professor Bruce, M.A., The University, Leeds 2. 

1932. *DILLON, Professor M., M.A., Ph.D., Wisconsin University, 

Madison, U.S.A. 

1938. DUNN, C. W., C.I.E., M.A., Manting House, Meldreth, 

1937. EARLS-JENKINS, R., M.A., D.Ed., F.I.L., 89 Lexham 

Gardens, Kensington, W. 8. 

1938. EDWARDS, Professor Evangeline D., D.Lit., School of 

Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 

1933. EDWARDS, Professor W. M., B.A., The University, 

Leeds 2. 

1938. ELSTON, C. S., M.A., Ph.D., Woodlands, High Molewood, 

1940. ELWELL-SUTTON, L. P., B.A., BM/DKAB, W.C. 1. 
1932. ENTWISTLE, Professor W. J., M.A., Exeter College, 


1931. EVANS, E. D. Priestley, 2 Fortfield Terrace, Sidmouth, 


1932. EVERETT, Miss D., M.A., Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. 
1930. EWERT, Professor A., M.A., Trinity College, Oxford. 


1912. FIEDLER, Professor H. G., M.V.O., M.A., The Lane House, 
Norham Road, Oxford. 

1933. FIRTH, J. R., M.A., 25 Boxwell Road, Berkhamsted, 


1936. FRASER, Professor J., M.A., 4 St. Michael's Mansions, 

Ship Street, Oxford. 

1912. GABRIELSON, Professor Dr. A., Djursholm, Stockholm, 

1910. GARDINER, A. H., M.A., D.Lit., F.B.A., Upton House, 

Wonston, Sutton Scotney, Hants. 

1934. GARMONSWAY, G. N., M.A., 83 The Green, Ewell, 


1912. GIRVAN, R., Ekadasha, Cleveden Gardens, Glasgow, W. 2. 
1926. GOUDY, A. P., M.A., 84 King Street, Cambridge. 

1906. *GRATTAN, Professor J. H. G., B.A., The University, 

1944. GREEN, Miss H. A. C., Royal Holloway College, Engle- 

field Green, Surrey. 

1941. GREEN, Miss M. M., M.A., 36 Lower Belgrave Street, 

S.W. 1. 

1942. HARLEY, A. H., M.A., 65 Aldenham Avenue, Radlett, 


1935. HARMER, Miss F. E., M.A., The University, Manchester, 13. 
1925. HARTING, Professor P. N. U., Lit.D., Euterpestr. 115B, 

Amsterdam (z), Holland. 

1939. HATTO, A. T., M.A., Loughton Manor, Nr. Bletchley, 


1893. *HEATH, Sir Henry F., K.C.B., K.B.E., Brown Tiles, 
Guestling, Nr. Hastings, Sussex. 

1940. HENNING, Walter, Ph.D., 38 Radegund Road, Cambridge. 

1937. HEYWORTH-DUNNE, J., B.A., D.Lit., 49 Belsize Court, 

N.W. 3. 

1944. HILDITCH, K. R., 22 Butts Road, Swan Bank, Penn, 
Wolverhampton, Staffs. 

1941. HORNER, Miss I. B., M.A., 7 Carill Gardens, Fallowfield, 

Manchester 14. 

1936. JOHNSTON, R. C., M.A., Doc. Univ. Strasbourg, The Red 

House, 60 Iffley Road, Oxford. 

1913. * JONES, Professor D., M.A., 3 Marsham Way, Gerrard's 

Cross, Bucks. 

1936. JONES, D. M., B.A., Exeter College, Oxford. 

1923. JOPSON, Professor N. B., M.A. (St. John's College, 
Cambridge), Postal Censorship, Edge Lane, Liver- 
pool 7. 


1941. KENT, Professor E. G., Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, 
The Graduate School, Philadelphia 4, Pa., U.S.A. 

1937. LATHAM, K. E., M.A., The Oxford House, Mape Street, 

E. 2. 
1936. LEGGE, Miss M. D., M.A., B.Litt., 115 Banbury Koad, 

1940. LEWIS, Bernard, B.A., Ph.D., 8 Brondesbury Court, 

Willesden Lane, N.W. 2. 
1931. LLEWELLYN, Professor E. C., M.A., B.Litt., Brynawel, 

Talbot Eoad, Llantrisant, Glam. 

1931. LORIMER, Lt.-Col. D. L. K., C.I.E., 2 Brockswood Lane, 

Welwyn Garden City, Herts. 

1940. McCLEAN, E. J., Dr. Phil., M.A., Vinga, Parkway, Gidea 

Park, Essex. 

1936. MclNTOSH, A., M.A., A.M., University College, Swansea. 
1936. MACKIE, Professor W. S., M.A., Drumoak, Greenfield 

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1933. MARCKWARDT, A. H., M.A., Ph.D., University of 

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1943. MASSE Y, W. Devereux, British Legation, Stockholm. 

1939. MASTER, A., C.I.E., M.A., 346 Clanricarde Gardens, W. 2. 

1940. MAVROGORDATO, Professor J., M.A., Exeter College, 


1900. MORLEY, Professor Edith J., 96 Kendrick Eoad, Eeading. 
1943. MUNDY, C. S., B.A., School of Oriental and African 

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1914. MUNRO, J. J., O.B.E., M.C., M.A., Authors' Club, 

2 Whitehall Court, S.W. 1. 

1932. NOBLE, Professor P. S., M.A., The University, 

1932. NORMAN, Professor F., M.A., 2 Tower Cottages, 

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1926. NORTHUP, Professor C. S., 407 Elmwood Avenue, 

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1934. O'LouGHLiN, J. L. N., M.A., 40 Sheldon Avenue, N. 6. 
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1932. ORTON, H., M.A., B.Litt., Dept. of English Language, 
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1936. PALMER, L. E., M.A., Ph.D., Cross End, Wavendon, 

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1930 POPE, Miss M. K., M.A., Doc. Univ. Paris, The Cottage, 

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1932. POTTER, S., M.A., B.Litt., Ph.D., University College, 


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1931. RHYS, Miss 0., M.A., Gwynva, Barton Lane, Headington, 

1917. RICHARDSON, G. H., 164 Rye Hill, Newcastle-on-Tyne. 

1932. RICHARDSON, L. J. D., M.A., University College, Cardiff. 
1902. *RICHARDSON, W. R., Cheselton, Withdean Crescent, 

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1932. Ross, A. S. C., M.A., The Old Homestead, Winslow, 

1936. SEATON, Miss M. E., M.A., 18 Parks Road, Oxford. 
1944. SHEARD, J. A., Ph.D., 58 Park House, Welwyn Garden 

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1943. SIMON, W., Ph.D., 13 Lisbon Avenue, Twickenham, 

1934. SMITH, A. H., B.A., Ph.D., D.Litt., Middle Farm, Alstone, 

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1934. SMITHERS, G. V., M.A., c/o Hertford College, Oxford. 
1936. STEWART, J. A., C.I.E., M.C., M.A., LL.D., 17 Avenue 

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1936. STONE, Miss L. W., M.A., Ditton Cottage, Thames Ditton, 


1943. SWITHINBANK, B. W., C.B.E., M.A., 466 Loose Road, 

1939. TAYLOR, W., M.A., 12 Sharia Okasha, Orman, Egypt. 

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1934. TUCKER, Miss S. L, M.A., Garden Flat, 35 Beaufort Road, 
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1933. WILLOUGHBY, Professor L. A., M.A., Ph.D., D.Litt., 

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1934. WILSON, R. M., M.A., The University, Leeds 2. 

1914. WOOD, A. C., M.C., M.A., 48 St. Albans Avenue, 
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1914. MANCHESTER. John Rylands Library, Deansgate. 

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1937. UPPSALA, Sweden. Kungl. Universitets Bibliotek. 

1929. WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A. Library of Congress. 


1939. LINGUISTIC SOCIETY OF AMERICA, Yale Graduate School, 
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A. 











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1. Notes on some English Loan-words in Welsh 

(A. S. C. Ross) 1 

2. On the Distribution of the Languages in the Old 

Eurasian Region (E. LEWY) .... 5 

3. The Value of Spelling as Evidence (C. L. WRENN) . 14 

4. The Sigmatic Forms of the Old Irish Verb (MYLES 

DILLON) ....... 40 

5. Palatalization of Consonants in Juxtaposition in 

Russian (S. BOYANUS) ..... 54 

The Philological Society's Balance Sheet, 1942 . . 62 

Annual Report for 1942 64 

List of Members, corrected to June, 1944 . . i-viii 


By A. S. C. Ross 

THE English loan-words of Welsh offer many points of interest 
to the English philologist and I propose to discuss some of 
them in this note. The standard work on the subject is 
T. H. Parry- Williams, The English Element in Welsh. It 
will be convenient to present the discussion in the form of a 
commentary on this work, to which paragraph-numberings 
without title of work refer. 2 

Ib. drel ' knave, churl '. This probably represents OE. 
prsell (ME. prall MnE. thrall) with shortened vowel (Luick 
383.4) and normal W. e for OE. se (as in W. crefft ' handi- 
craft, trade ') < OE. eraeft la) rather than, as given, 
OE. prsel (ME. prf) with exceptional W. e for OE. ME. f 
(as in W. ysten ' a pitcher, ewer, a kind of vessel ' < OE. 
stama or ME. stjne (MnE. stean) Ib). 

21 ff. It is clear from 22 that W. e is the normal repre- 
sentation of E. e (e.g. W. help < 1C. help). But beside forms 
with this normal representation, Parry- Williams gives others 
in which E. e is apparently otherwise represented, viz. by 
W. a ( 21a) and by W. y or i ( 21b). As he points out, some 
of these forms are easily explained. Thus W. marsiant 
1 merchant ' does not represent an E. form with er but one 
in which ME. er has become dr (cf. ME. marchant etc. see 
NED. s.v. Merchant, sb. and a.) ; on the other hand W. 
cerfio ' to carve ' represents an E. form before the operation 
of this change (cf. ME. kerue etc. see NED. s.v. Carve, v.). 
W. clerc beside dare l clerk ' may be due to the influence of 
the E. spelling. Parry- Williams also suggests tentatively 
that some of the examples of W. y, i apparently corresponding 

1 I should like to express my thanks to E. S. Olszewska for advice on 
various points. 

2 Abbreviations : E. = English ; EDD. = J. Wright, The English 
Dialect Dictionary ; Fr. = French ; Lat. = Latin ; Luick = K. Luick, 
Historische grammatik der englischen sprache ; NED. = J. A. H. Murray, etc., 
A New English Dictionary ; W. = Welsh. The abbreviations O (Old), 
M (Middle), Mn (Modern) are used before the names of languages. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. B 


to E. e may actually reflect E. forms with i due to the change 
e > I in certain positions in E. (he compares MnE. English 
cf. Luick 379). But among the words given by Parry- 
Williams there remains a nucleus with W. a and with W. y, i 
for which he gives no explanation. In several cases it is how- 
ever possible to point to a form with a or i which is to be 
considered as the etymon of the Welsh form rather than the 
etymon with e given by Parry- Williams. Viz. : 

I. W. a : etymonic a : 

chwalkys ' whelks ' ; cf. E. walke (NED. s.v. W helke 1 c). 
transh ( a trench ' ; cf. E. tranche (< OFr. tranche beside 
OFr. trenche > MnE. trench) which is recorded from Melusine 
by NED. s.v. Tranche. 

" tranket kyllell krydd : Trenket." ME. trenket is from 
OFr. trenquet, trenchet, a derivative of OFr. trencher (see 
NED. s.v. Trinket) ; presumably tranket derives (either 
directly or through an unrecorded English form) from an 
OFr. *tranquet, tranchet 1 (cf. OFr. tranche, trancher beside 
trenche, trencher). 2 

II. W. y, i : etymonic i : 

bryst (?) c breast ' ; cf. E. brist (NED. s.v. Breast ; Luick 

bysant ' bezant ' ; cf. E. byzant (NED. s.v. Bezant, byzant) ; 
the English form with y is doubtless due to the direct influence 
of Latin byzantius (sc. nummus). 

clyfer, clyfar ' clever '. The English word is difficult (see 
NED. s.v. Clever, a.). Here it will suffice to say that a form 
with I is plentifully attested in the Modern English dialects, 
cf. Eiw(r) N. Yorks., E. Lanes., S. Cheshire, N.W. Derbyshire, 
Middle Shropshire, Somerset, N.W. Devon ; klivw Ireland, 
Northumberland (EDD. Index, s.v. Clever). 

synysgal ' seneschal ' ; cf. Lat. siniscalcus beside senescalcus 
(Ducange, Glossari^m Mediae et infimae Latinitatis s.vv.). 

limwnsen ' a lemon ' ; cf. E. limon (NED. s.v. Lemon, 
sb. 1 ) < Fr. limon. 

1 F. Godefroi, Dictionnaire de Vancien fran$ais, Complement s.v. Tranchet. 

2 On OFr. en beside an in such words see K. Nyrop, Grammaire historique 
de la langue fran$aise I 215. 


pibirment ' peppermint ' ; cf. E. piper (NED. s.v. Pepper) 
< Lat. piper. 

simant ' cement ' ; cf. ME. symant, ciment (NED. s.v. 
Cement) < OFr. ciment. 

syndal ' sendal ' ; trysor ' treasure ' ; (trysorwr trysorydd 
( treasurer ' ; trysori ' to treasure ') ; try spas ' trespass '. 
Sporadic English forms with i are recorded for each of these 
words (see NED. s.vv. Sendal, Treasure sb., Trespass, sb.). 

64 ff. It will be convenient to begin the discussion by 
giving the normal Welsh representations of three ME. sounds, 
viz. (I) au, (2) u, and (3) gu. 

(1) ME. au (or its later English developments) normally 
appear as W. aw (e.g. hawg ' hawk ' ; dawns ' a dance ' 61). 

(2) There are a number of cases in which the diphthongiza- 
tion of ME. u appears as W. ow (e.g. dowt * doubt ' 68b). 1 

(3) Examples of ME. ou in the Welsh loan-words are rare ; 
cf. however, W. Fowls ' St. Paul's ' < ME. Powlys, Poules 
< 64). 2 

The diphthongization of ME. u probably followed the 
course u > uu > ou > du > au and, at one and the same 
period, earlier and later stages may have existed side by side 
(cf. the standard and " pseudo -refined " pronunciations of 
house at the present day). Luick considers that ou was 
normal in XVI, du was reached at the beginning of XVII 
and au in the latter half of XVIII (Luick 483). The Welsh 
loans must reflect the stage ou, or something near it. 

In 68a words with W. aw are given and Parry- Williams 
tentatively suggests that they may reflect forms having an 
E. sound which had fallen together with the diphthongization 
of ME. u. The words are :fawt ' vault ' ; rhawt ' a pack, 
troop, rout ' (" rawter : Riotter " < E. router, 20, is also 

1 This diphthong is rare in Welsh ; see J. Morris Jones, A Welsh Grammar 

2 We may accept Parry- Williams' explanation ( 62) of an occasional 
W. ow in Salesbury corresponding to a ME. au (or its developments) instead 
of a W. aw (thus " fowtus : Faulty") as due to a Welsh pronunciation 
(cf. mowr for mawr * great ' in some Welsh dialects) rather than an English 


mentioned) ; Sawden ' sultan ' ; sawd(u)rio * to solder ' ; 
sawdring t solder, cement ' ; sawdwr ' soldier '. 

Of these examples rhawt and rawter may owe the aw to 
analogy with the native W. rhawd ' company '. The remaining 
words all show ME. forms with au (beside ou) ; see NED. 
s.vv. Vault, sb. 1 ; SoMan ; Solder, sb. 1 ; Solder, v. ; Soldier, 
sb. It seems therefore that the W. forms with aw correspond, 
in the normal way, to ME. forms with au. Parry- Williams' 
tentative explanation is thus to be rejected. 

The ME. variation QU ^ au in such words as the above is 
to some extent obscure. An identical variation is found in 
the OFr. etymons. Normally ol and ol fell together as ou in 
OFr., but in Picard they were kept separate, $1 giving au, 
gl giving ou ; thus *colaphu > OFr. coup, Picard caup ; 
*multu > OFr. mout ; Picard mout. 1 W. Horn, Englische 
Studien Ivi, 287-291, suggests that the ME. variation reflects 
the French one. This may indeed be true in the case of words 
such as vault (: OFr. vou(l)te, vau(l)te ) or soldier (: OFr. soudier, 
saudier) where the two English forms are both widespread. 2 
But in the case of other words, where the w-form predominates 
in English e.g. solder v. and sb. (: OFr. souder, sauder ; 
soudure, saudure), soldan (: OFr. soudan), it is possible that 
the aw-forms are merely due to a dialectal variation in English. 
R. Jordan, Handbuch der mittelenglischen grammatik 105 
note, states that in many dialects the first element of ME. QU 
must have acquired an a-quality ; this specifically in the 
West Midlands (Gawaine, Audelay, Hereford Documents). 

It is clear that the au (rather than QU) attested in the 
etymons of the Welsh words discussed above cannot be 
brought into direct connection with Picard au. It is however 
very reasonable to assume that it reflects the dialectal pro- 
nunciation of the West Midlands. 

1 W. Meyer-Lubke, Historische grammatik der franzosischen sprache I 81. 

2 In vault the cm-form has become standard. 



SURVEYING the linguistic map of Asia and Europe as shown, 
e.g. in the atlas in P. W. Schmidt's valuable work, Die 
Sprachfamilien und Sprachenkreise der Erde, we observe in 
this region of the earth four great linguistic units : 

(1) the Indo-European languages connecting Europe and 
Asia ; 

(2) the Semitic languages the whole Semito-Hamitic 
family of languages connecting Asia and Africa ; 

(3) the Uralo-Altaic languages occupying the northern 
part of the Eurasian region from the Baltic, the Danube, 
and the Dardanelles in the West to the Yellow Sea in the 

(4) the Indo-Chinese languages holding the eastern and 
south-eastern parts of this continent. 

The so-called genealogical relationship between the single 
members of these four units are not established with the 
Same accuracy, e.g. that the Turko-Mongolian languages are 
related to the Uralian (i.e. the Samoyed plus the Finno- 
Ugrian) languages, the Manchu-Tungus, and the Japano- 
Korean languages is not proved by long lists of etymologies, 
although there are good ones (cf. for the Japanese and the 
Uralian W. Proehle, Keleti Szemle 17.147-83). The linguistic 
type of these languages, however, is the same ; cf. the books 
of H. Winkler, and now K. Groenbech, Der turkische Sprach- 
bau I, 1936. 

Those four big units, genealogical ones to a certain degree, 
represent certainly well defined, and rather simple, types 
of linguistic structure : 

(1) the Indo-European languages the stem-inflecting type ; 

(2) the Semitic languages the root-inflecting type ; 

(3) the Uralo-Altaic languages the subordinate type ; 

(4) the Indo-Chinese languages the word-isolating type. 


These types are described in a satisfactory way in the small 
book, Die Haupttypen des Sprachbaus, written more than 
thirty years ago by F. N. Finck. I almost wholly agree with 
this masterly little book, the condensed result of a short life, 
dedicated to hard and admirable work. I have changed only 
the term used by Finck to characterize the Chinese language : 
" wurzel-isolierend," root-isolating, having been convinced 
by a carefully thought out paper by W. Simon (TPS 1937, 
pp. 99-119), that the elements of the Chinese language are 
to be called " words ", not " roots ". Although evident by 
itself it may be said expressis verbis that no catchword covers 
all the qualities of any language or linguistic unit or type ; 
that there is within every unit a great variety of individual 
expression, possibilities, and liberties of development and 
mixture. Those labels, like stem-inflecting, indicate the most 
striking peculiarities differentiating one type from the other. 
Finck's book is an objective description, but progressive 
knowledge might help to change terms. I, generally a faithful 
follower of this my teacher, proposed to use the term : " flexion- 
varying " (form-variierend) instead of stem-inflecting, thinking 
this the most essential feature of the Indo-European group. 
The " word " in these four types has a different pattern : 
the word of the fourth, group and type, is an almost unchange- 
able formation ; the word of the third one unites suffixal 
elements with the stem by phonetic means ; the word of the 
second one changes vowels and consonants inside the " root " ; 
the word of the first one produces the same grammatical 
effect by different means : capiaw ; ama&o, serves ; femina. 
I wonder which feature is most characteristic for the type ; 
from the systematizing point of view Finck's term may be 


Looking at the geographical distribution of these four 
units, we might suggest that they have gained their vast 
territories fighting against other linguistic units, i.e. against 
men speaking languages of a different type. This suggestion, 


induced by observing the spreading of these groups over 
the earth's surface, may be confirmed by considering that the 
frontiers of these groups have continued to advance in some 
parts of the earth in historic times : in western Europe, 
e.g. we see the Romans, a people talking an Indo-European 
language, moving forward against the Iberians, in eastern 
Europe the Russians against Uralian tribes, in India the 
Indians against the Dravidian peoples. In a similar way the 
Semitic and the Uralo-Altaic groups may have gained their 
extension in old times. Unfortunately we do not know the 
starting points of these four units which represent types 
of human civilization. It would be helpful to know their 
cradles, but in spite of all investigations it is not yet possible 
to do more than guess at them. For the first, the Indo- 
European group, we may guess the regions round the Carpathian 
mountains ; for the second, the Semitic, Arabia, and the 
adjacent parts of Africa ; for the third, the Uralo-Altaic 
group the Altai at least this, Castren's idea, has not been 
replaced by a better one. For the fourth, the Indo-Chinese, 
a connection with the western parts of the region is probable, 
as we shall see. 


These four units, so often mentioned, do not cover the 
whole field. In the highest parts of the continent and on 
the remotest shores languages are spoken that are not related 
to these four units. They are spoken in comparatively small 
districts, and thus look like survivals of once larger units. 
Some may be the results of immigration from across the sea. 
Many languages, spoken in India and Further India, belonging 
to the Austric family of languages established by P. W. 
Schmidt, the centre of which is among the islands between 
Asia and Australia presumably, may be languages of 
immigrants. The Eskimo dialects spoken in the farthest 
North-East of the Asiatic continent are the obvious result 
of immigration from America where the languages of the 
Eskimo seem to have had their home. 



The smaller linguistic units I referred to are 

1 the Basque in the western corner of the Pyrenees. The 
genealogical relationship of this language seems two-sided : 
to languages spoken in northern Africa, especially the Berber, 
and to languages spoken in the Caucasus. The type resembles 
Caucasian languages. So the results of the work of 
H. Schuchardt and others may be summed up. 

2 the tripartite group of the Caucasian languages them- 
selves. People knowing these languages (cf. the useful 
Einfuhrung in das Studium der kaukasischen Sprachen by 
A. Dirr, 1928) doubted often if their three groups form one 
unit; cf. however, R. Lafon, BSL 29.138. One who is fortunate 
enough not to have had his judgment biased by too 
profound a knowledge of this difficult matter, sees more 
sharply the traits distinguishing these languages from the 
surrounding ones : (1) the subject of the action is, in con- 
nection with different verbs (e.g. transitive/intransitive) or 
forms of verbs (e.g. present/aorist), marked by different 
forms of the noun ; (2) a mark of the object of the transitive 
verb is included, " incorporated ", into the verbal form ; 
(3) an ending, marking a case of a noun, is sometimes repeated 
at the end of the following noun a kind of analepsis. One 
of these three characteristics found in a language arouses 
the suspicion of Caucasian relationship, influence, or neigh- 
bourhood now or formerly ; united, they are the proof of 
Caucasian identity, as may be understood by the fine descrip- 
tion Finck has given in his book of the Georgian (Gruzin) 
language, pp. 132-149. He was the first who recognized the 
type represented by the Georgian as a special linguistic type, 
and so had to coin a new term describing by a catchword 
the character of the word of these languages. He chose : 
" gruppen-flektierend ", inflecting groups (of elements), 
indicating by this term that here the inflected words, especially 
the verbal forms, consist of elements loosely united which 
can be repeated and grouped round a (verbal) root. 


Viewing the three groups of the modern Caucasian languages, 
the southern, the north-western, and the north-eastern, well 
distinguished from each other, and seeing that they are 
confined to a small and partly inaccessible region, we may 
suggest that they are the survivals of languages once spread 
over a wider territory, all the more as we find many extinct 
languages, once used in Asia Minor and in the highlands 
between Asia Minor and Iran, known to us by inscriptions, 
as the Elamite, Mitannian, Lycian, Chaldee, Sumerian, in 
relation to the Caucasian groups ; cf. the papers and works 
of F. Bork, "Das Sumerische eine kaukasische Sprache," 
OLZ 1924, 169 ; Skizze des Lykischen 1926 ; Altkaukasische 
Studien I Der Mitannibrief und seine Sprache 1939. Etruscan 
may belong to this group, having been brought by sea from 
Asia Minor, as ancient traditions attest, and as now in modern 
times is beginning to be believed again. 

3 the Burushaski in the mountains of the Pamir, known 
now by the admirable work of D. L. R. Lorimer. The relation 
of this language to the Caucasian ones is suggested by some 
scholars, e.g. by R. Bleichsteiner. 

4 the Dravidian languages in southern India and eastern 
Iran. Relationship of these languages to Caucasian ones was 
suggested by G. Huesing, Memnon 4, 1910, 5 ; especially 
with the Mitannian by G. W. Browne, JAOS 50, 1930, 273. 
On the other hand a relation to (some of the) Australian 
languages has been suggested with good reasons which 
F. Mueller attempted in vain to refute. These two suggestions 
perhaps do not contradict each other, whereas a relation 
of the Dravidian languages to the Uralian languages which 
several scholars tried to prove seems to me without any 

5 the languages of the Andaman islands, obviously of 
the highest importance for the history of mankind, are not 
known to me at all, so that I cannot give any opinion about 
their linguistic affinity. 

6 the Lati language, spoken in a mountainous region of 
southern China. Nothing more is known to me about it. 


All these languages look, except perhaps the Andamanese, 
from the geographical point of view like " pushed-backs ". 

The whole of eastern Siberia is surrounded by small 
languages, partially made known to students only in recent 
years by a remarkable book : Jazyki i pis'mennost* paleo- 
aziatskix narodov, pod redakciej E. A. Krejnovica, 1934, with 
an interesting linguistic map. The term " paleoasiatic " 
expresses the conception that the speakers of these languages 
" represent an older stratum of Asiatic population pushed 
back to the North ", Finck, Die Sprachstamme des Erdkreises, 
p. 65. A close and certain relationship between these languages, 
however, has never been established. They are 

7 the Yukagir language on the shore of the Arctic Sea 
between Indigirka and Kolyma, and near the middle course 
of the Kolyma. The language is now called Odul' as the 
people call themselves. Its wider extension was proved with 
the help of the names of the rivers by my dear old friend 
W. B. Shostakovic, UJ 6.81-9. 

8 the Chukchee, 9 the Koryak, 10 the Kamchadal 
languages, now called Luoravetlan, Nymylan, Itel'men, 
occupy the regions to the east of the Yukagir (Odul') language, 
the Chukchee peninsula and Kamchatka ; they form a 
linguistic unity. 

11 the Eskimo language, now called Yut, and 12 the 
Aleutic language, now called Unangan, are related to each 
other and, as mentioned, probably introduced from the East. 

13 the Gilyak language, now called Nixv, spoken in the 
lower valley of the Amur and on the island of Sachalin. 

14 the Ainu language, spoken on Sakhalin and some of 
the Japanese islands. It has been asserted that this language 
is related to the Gilyak language, Finck, Sprachstamme des 
Erdkreises, p. 66. So far as I can see, this assertion lacks proof, 
cf. K. Bouda, ZDMG 91.226. Some have searched for relation- 
ship of the Ainu in a south-easterly direction, 0. Gjerdman, 
Le Monde Oriental 20, 1926, 29-84, and it might be found 
near New Guinea. 

15 the last language, mentioned in Jazyki i pis'mennost' . . . 


is the language of the Yenissei-Ostyak people, now called 
more aptly Ket. It is spoken, not in the eastern part of 
Siberia, but near the middle course of the Yenissei. That 
its extension was much wider, W. B. Shostakovic has shown 
again as he did in the case of the Yukagir in the paper 
mentioned above. A hundred years ago a language closely 
related to the Ket existed, that of the Kott, their neighbours. 
Now this seems to have vanished. 

A. Trombetti was the first to point out that the language 
of the Ket was a link between the languages of the Far East, 
the Indo-Chinese group, and those of the Caucasus, cf. Elementi 
di Glottologia 191, 466. Our knowledge of this language is 
still very limited, and we urgently need a collection of original 
texts. An analysis of the matter collected by the great 
Castre"n, UJ 13, 1933, 291-309, showed the vocabulary to 
be related to the Indo-Chinese whereas the structure of the 
verb, with prepositional prefixes, marks of the object (these 
marks of the object were discovered, after Castren, by K. 
Donner, JSFOu 44, 28, and N. K. Karger, Pamjati M. A. 
Kastrena k 75-letiju dnja smerti, 1927, 102) and marks of 
the subject (sometimes repeated), shows relations to the 
Caucasian type ; cf. H. Findeisen, Sinica 1938, 52, esp. 61-2. 
To ignore this language in a survey of the languages of the 
world, the link between two important centres of human 
civilization, the relations of which were stressed by H. Winkler, 
Memnon 7, 1903, pg. 20, before, hardly reveals a deep insight 
into the problems of human or linguistic history. 

We are now prepared to find in eastern Siberia traces of 
relationship with the West, as we found them in the case of 
the Caucasian-Ket-Indo-Chinese languages. 

The Yukagir language, 7, has a vocabulary that is sometimes 
reminiscent of the Finno-Ugrian, UJ 8, 1928, 287. The 
structure, as described in Jazyki . . ., though not very clearly, 
resembles by the existence of a determined declension and 


an objective conjugation, besides a simple declension and 
a subjective conjugation, the Mordvin language. This is the 
language of the Finno-Ugrian group which by deviations from 
the type common to all the other Finno-Ugrian languages 
tends towards the south-eastern part of European Russia, 
i.e. the Caucasus ; cf. MSFOu 67, 241 note. That a person 
who has a knowledge of the Caucasian languages was directly 
reminded of them by the structure of the Yukagir, K. Bouda, 
ZDMG 91, 223, might confirm my impression concerning its 
linguistic type. 

The structure of the Chukchee-Koryak-Kamchadal group, 
8, 9, 10 (cf. W. Bogoraz, Handbook of American Indian 
Languages II 691-903) resembles by the incorporation of a 
nominal object not only of pronominal elements into the 
verbal forms, and the differentiation of transitive and 
intransitive verbs languages of the Caucasian group, some- 
times especially the Abkhaz language of the north-western 
branch, described by G. Deeters in a fine paper, Nachr. d. 
Gesellschaft d. Wissensch. Goettingen, Phil-histKl, 1931.- 

If we are on the right track, we might suggest three con- 
nections of the East to the West which we may represent 
in a schematic way : 

(Finno-Ugrian :) Mordvin c Yukagir 


u Chukchee - 

o Koryak- 

a Kamchadal 


i Ket .... Indo-Chinese 

Basque a 

n languages 

Although not inclined to stress the importance of similar 
single words in the vocabularies of languages, I note that 
in Chukchee orgoor, plural orwit means ' sledge ', " sani ", 
Bogoraz, Luoravetlansko-russkij slovarj, 1937, 109, and in 
Basque orga ' carro, vagon ' ; and in Chukchee wurguur 
' ernik, polzucaja bere'za ', ' shrub, creeping birchtree ', 
Bogoraz, p. 163, and in Basque urki ' abedul '. 



The remaining paleoasiatic language, the Gilyak, 13, does 
not remind us at all of any of the Caucasian languages, nor 
of the Uralo-Altaic so far as I see. It seems completely 
different in type. Its most remarkable feature is the 
grammatical value of the changes of the consonants beginning 
the word. So, to denote the type by a catchword, I should 
propose to call it : initial-inflecting, " anlaut-flektierend." 
Cf. the good description of the language in Jazyki ipis'mennost' 
. . . 181-222, by E. A. Krejnovic, and Fonetika nivxskogo 
(gilyackogo) jazyka, 1937, by the same author. We do not 
know anything corresponding to it in Siberia. But very far 
away, in the outmost West of the Eurasian continent we find 
that the Celtic languages show the same evidence though 
they belong " genealogically " to the Indo-European group. 
If the theory be right that the " paleoasiatic " languages are 
the remains of older pushed back layers of Eurasiatic popula- 
tions, the Gilyak and the Celtic might be of the oldest layers, 
as the correspondences are found so far away from each other, 
in the farthest corners of the continent in the West and in 
the East. 


[Read at the Anniversary Meeting of the Philological Society, 15th May, 1943] 


ALMOST exactly 62 years ago, the late Sir James Murray, 
pioneer founder of the Society's great Dictionary, devoted 
his presidential address at the Anniversary Meeting to English 
spelling : and in the discussion which followed his discourse 
there took part Henry Sweet, F. J. Furnivall, and A. J. 
Ellis among others, at a gathering which represented probably 
the best of English philology at a time which was something 
like the golden age of the subject. It is a special pleasure to 
me to be privileged to address this Anniversary Meeting on 
a kindred subject. These great men were among " the giants 
that were before the flood " : and one of my objects in 
choosing spelling as my subject this afternoon is to try to 
revive the Society's interest and through it that of a wider 
public in a matter which those great scholars regarded as 
of paramount importance, and one which in the last quarter 
of the nineteenth century was a main preoccupation of the 
Philological Society. Apart from the not always strictly 
scientific activities of the Simplified Spelling Society a 
movement which was perhaps the one positive if indirect 
result of the society's work on spelling the subject has of 
late been relatively neglected by those best qualified to deal 
with it : and it is a cause of gratification to me that, coincident 
with my address to-day, Sir William Craigie, who is so honour- 
able an exception to the last remark, has been elected to the 
presidential chair of the Society. 

In January, 1881, the Philological Society, following the 
recommendations of Murray as modified and definitely set 
out in a report from a committee of its members, adopted 
proposals which it commended to the public, for the " partial 
correction " of English spelling. 1 Apart from the definite 

1 Philological Society Transactions 1880-81, which also contains Murray's 
presidential address of 21st May, 1880, referred to above. 


formation of the Society for Simplified Spelling, this weighty 
series of recommendations, though supported by leading 
lexicographers, orthoepists and phoneticians of the time, 
seems to have achieved no result, and our spelling to-day shows 
scarcely a trace of change despite the more rational trend 
of spelling in the United States. Yet the state of English 
spelling which Murray and the Society's experts so con- 
vincingly analysed in 1880 and 1881 presents two character- 
istics which are, I think, profoundly influencing our attitude 
towards the language. On the one hand our spelling seems to 
be static, but on the other it tends to become ideographic 
or rather the written " words " tend to become group-symbols 
of group-sounds, that is a group of letters symbolizes collec- 
tively a group of noises expressive of an idea or thing with no 
consciousness of any relationship between individual letter- 
symbol and individual noise. Moreover, as Henry Bradley 
pointed out in his important paper On the Relation between 
Spoken and Written English* there is an ever increasing 
number of " book-words " in the language, in which the 
group of letter-symbols represents an idea or concept directly, 
with little if any consciousness of sound. Indeed there are 
words, like scientific technical terms, for instance, which 
positively have no clear pronunciation, since they do not 
exist in any speech-tradition, but only as written symbols 
directly apprehensible without the medium of sound. How 
ideographic our spelling tends to become, even among the 
quite unlearned, may be illustrated by the following anecdote 
told to me by an acquaintance. A mother was using, to teach 
a little girl to read, a primer which sought to teach the art 
of reading to small children by means of pictures. The child 
made excellent progress. But one day when asked to demon- 
strate her achievement, the little girl read out with confidence 
" BOY boy, DOG dog, CAT pussy ". 2 

Now this static quality of our written language to which 
attention has been so often drawn, tends to produce not 

1 Collected Papers of Henry Bradley, edited by Robert Bridges. 

2 Cf. Reading without Tears, Longmans, 1910. 


only in the minds of ordinary people but also of professional 
students of the language an undue emphasis upon, and an 
exaggerated belief in, the significance of the evidential value 
of spelling ; for the more we take a strictly static spelling for 
granted, the more markedly shall we become aware of every 
divagation from the norm. The other characteristic of our 
spelling which I have mentioned, its representation of a group 
of sounds by a collectively apprehended group of symbols, has 
brought about a growing habit even among philologists of 
thinking of symbols divorced from sounds. Often one reads 
accounts of " sound-changes " which suggest that the writers 
have merely been conscious of changes of symbols : and this 
danger of exaggerated symbol-consciousness is especially 
great to students using books purporting to give the history 
of primitive periods in language-development. I have even 
heard teachers inform students of Old English sound-changes 
that o becomes e (pronounced [i :]) by 1 (pronounced as the 
current diphthong [ai]) mutation. There has also of late been 
an increase in the use by writers on linguistic subjects of 
those " Zoomorphic terms " against which Murray so 
vigorously protested, such as " letters creeping in " or 
" parasitic consonants appearing ". 

In the year 1879 the Allgemeiner Verein fur vereinfachte 
deutsche Rechtschreibung petitioned the Reichstag for " the 
periodic adjustment of any discrepancy between pronunciation 
and spelling whenever such occur, and are noticed ". This 
was a pioneer declaration. Such readjustments have been 
in recent times in Europe only partial, as, for example, the 
revision of Russian spelling by the Soviet Government. But 
whereas such changes have, in Continental languages, been 
deliberate and the result of authoritative action, with English 
they have been in recent as in earlier times haphazard, 
unconscious or gradual. Hence the unrivalled heterogeneity, 
and what I might call the " diachronicness " of our ortho- 
graphy, which makes it the joy of the questing philologer, and 
imparts to it a kind of amber quality of fascinating interest to 
the historian. 


Not long after the almost still-born effort of the Philological 
Society to improve our spelling, misspellings were accepted 
as decisive criteria in a famous criminal trial 1 ; and a glance 
at recent editions of Old and Middle English texts and histories 
of the language will show that, though the authors almost 
invariably pay lip-service to the belief that spelling as a guide 
to pronunciation should only be accepted as evidence when 
corroborated by other kinds of evidence, yet orthography is 
increasingly stressed by philologists implicitly in matters of 
the establishment of dialect, date, authorship, etc., as if it 
were in itself sufficiently decisive evidence. The " occasional " 
spelling has indeed almost dominated important parts of such 
works as Zachrisson's Pronunciation of English Vowels, 1400 
to 1 700 and Professor Wyld's A History of Modern Colloquial 
English ; and a very considerable number of authors and 
teachers have been permanently influenced by their implicit 
tendency to exalt the occasional spelling in all kinds of 
historical investigations of our language. 

With the foregoing considerations in mind, it is the purpose 
of this address to re-examine some aspects of spelling as an 
aid to the philologist, especially in relation to matters of 
pronunciation and the dating of documents. 

First I take some clear instances from Beowulf, in which 
there seems to be no doubt at all of the value of orthography 
as a linguistic criterion. In 1. 2668 the form fullasstu reminds 
us of the possibility of Western influence on the late tenth 
century scribe of the extant MS., since this 1st person singular 
of the present indicative in -u is the regular usage in the 
Vespasian Psalter Gloss for which a West Midland ultimate 
origin seems probable. This use of an occasional Western 
form is what might be expected as a tendency in nearly all 
late Old English MSS., since the incursions of the Norsemen had 

1 Pigott's misspellings hesitency and likelehood at the special Commis- 
sion's investigation of charges against Parnell, in the alleged facsimile 
letter reproduced in The Times in 1887 and rejected as a forgery in 1889. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. C 


concentrated the Christian culture and the art of copying 
especially into the West. But when we find in the same MS. a 
number of instances of apparent confusion between d and d, the 
view that the text has at some time passed through the hands 
of a Western copyist is greatly strengthened because of the 
frequency of this type of error in the Vespasian Psalter 
Gloss. Cf. the writing of hador for hador in 1. 414 
and the similar confusion of ad with ad in 1107 though 
these are not yet beyond dispute. But in 1. 1278 all 
will agree that the MS. reading peod must go back to a form 
of dead, probably the Northumbrian deod which might early 
in the eighth century have been written deod. This confusion 
of d and d is entirely cleared up in 1. 1375, where drysmap, 
though accepted, I think, in all the glossaries of editions, 
must be an error for prysmap or drysmap in view 
of the noun prosm. Now this confusion of d and 
d is, as has been said above, a feature of the prob- 
ably Western Vespasian Psalter Gloss once more. But 
such confusions suggest also that the MS. of Beowulf must 
ultimately look back to an archetype of the earlier eighth 
century : for it was not till late in this century that the new 
symbol d came into use, and it would naturally be soon after 
that that a copyist, turning the older d (used earlier as a 
voiced spirant as well as a stop) into d, would make the 
confusion. 1 But this d d confusion would seem to imply an 
archetypal MS. in which the older practice of d for the later 
d was found. The form wundini in 1. 1382 of Beowulf clearly is 
an early eighth century one ; and this solitary survival in the 
late tenth century Beowulf MS. of the early instrumental ending 
(not found after the middle of the eighth century) confirms 
what the d d spellings pointed to, namely an early eighth 
century Beowulf actually in writing. Here, then, the spelling 
would seem to play a valuable part in reconstructing the 
history of the text of Beowulf. But it is to be noted that it 
does not stand alone, but receives important corroborative aid. 

1 Cf. Exodus 1. 40, where the MS. dryrmyde = drysmyde (s and r confusion) 
= the normal prysmode. 



While the argument from spelling in the foregoing illustra- 
tions from Beowulf seems fairly clear and conclusive, it has 
yet been but little used by the experts. But in the Runic 
inscription on the Ruthwell Cross to which I now turn, the 
meaning of the spellings has generally of late been regarded 
by scholars as clearly discernible, though the orthography is 
in fact so it seems to me quite indecisive as evidence, 
because other and important evidences point in quite different 

In general the Ruthwell Cross inscription is characterized by 
the survival of the primitive O.E. i and se which were both 
replaced by e about the middle of the eighth century : and 
these spellings, such as in hinas, fusse, appilse and bistemid, 
supported by a number of apparently early forms, are now 
generally accepted as evidence for a date early in the eighth 
century. Inconsistencies in spelling such as walde, with final 
e instead of ae, might not be serious obstacles to this view. 
But in his Northumbrian Crosses of the Pre-Norman Age, 
W. G. Collingwood, arguing as one entirely unacquainted with 
philological technical matters, showed almost overwhelming 
evidence for a date at the very end of the eighth century. 
Basing himself entirely on the artistic types exhibited by the 
Bewcastle column (with whose school of craftsmanship the 
Ruthwell Cross must be very closely connected) and that of 
other Northumbrian monuments whose art is obviously of 
earlier design, he proves by his " typological theory " that 
the Ruthwell inscription (that is the earlier portion of it) 
cannot, because of the type of art displayed, be earlier than 
late in the eighth century : and he adds plausible historical 
background to his date for the inscription at the close of the 
century. 1 One would hesitate to differ from so outstanding an 
archaeologist and historian of art as the late W. G. Collingwood. 
Yet in the dating of the Ruthwell Cross, it would seem that 
philology points one way and art another ways which are 
well-nigh a century apart. 

1 Vide especially op. cit. pp. 112 d seq. 


In these circumstances, I think, we should look for 
a view of all the facts of spelling of the inscription 
which could be reconciled to the typological results 
of Collingwood, in preference to any which is based on 
either the purely linguistic or the purely artistic evidence. 
I have already mentioned the failure of walde in the inscription 
to retain the primitive se, which suggests a later type of 
spelling than is found in the monument as a whole. The 
notorious form rodi, in Krist wses on rodi, also shows an ending 
which ought not to be there according to what is known of 
English linguistic history : for the feminine noun rod here has 
the primitive instrumental inflexion in -i, which is proper to 
nouns of the a-declension masculine and neuter, but could not 
occur in nouns of the o-declension which would have se in the 
early eighth century. Attempts to explain this oddity as the 
working of analogy (the last infirmity of busy philologists) 
are unconvincing 1 : for such an extraordinary working of 
analogy between a feminine o-stem noun and one of the 
a-declension would be hard to parallel. The forms maegsibbi 
(a gloss above the Latin affectui) in the Epinal Gloss of some- 
where in the eighth century, and romdecdestri in the Franks 
Casket (supposed to be of the earliest eighth century) have been 
cited in support of the explanation from analogy by Dickins 
and Ross (loc. cit.) : but the -i of maegsibbi seems obviously 
to be a mere dittographing of the i of affectui, and the spellings 
of the Franks Casket are as a whole evidently careless, 
inconsistent, or corrupt. Furthermore, there is a strange 
inconsistency (if an early eighth century date is accepted for 
the Ruthwell Cross inscription) between the forms rodi and 
bloddB. For, if the -i-ending of the instrumental is assumed to 
have survived in the language of this text analogically or 
otherwise in rodi, it is amazing that the neuter a-stem noun 
blod, in the expression mip blodse (b)istemi(d), should show, 
not the expected instrumental -^'-ending after mip, but as, 
which would be appropriate rather if blod had been a feminine 

1 Cf. The Dream of the Rood edited by Bruce Dickins and A. S. C. Ross, 
London 1935 : p. 11. 


o-stem noun. There is, besides, the doubtful form (i)ddegisgde;f, 
which, if considered as the remains of the sentence wcepidse 
giscaeft (cf. weop eal gesceaft of 1. 55 of the later Vercelli 
version), would be extraordinarily archaic. 1 In view of these 
and other seeming contradictions and anomalies in the 
spellings and forms of the Kuthwell Cross inscription, I 
suggest as a hypothesis, that, as Collingwood typologically 
demonstrates on historical artistic grounds that the inscription 
belongs to the close of the eighth century, we accept this date 
and reconsider the linguistic phenomena on that assumption. 
Now it is well known that inscriptions for the dead tend to 
use archaic forms of language a tendency found in the 
ancient as well as in the modern world. In runic inscriptions 
one might compare the survival of the eo^-rune (apparently 
with the value of h) in the Urswick in Furness in- 
scription of circa 900 in the proper name Torhtred 
(which appears in the dative as Torohtredae) 2 : and we know 
from the late fuparc of MS. St. John's College Oxford 17 
(circa 1110) that this eoh-mne survived the Norman conquest as 
a symbol for h, 3 though originally it seems to have represented 
the labio-spirant consonant hw. This eoA-rune is employed 
in the Kuthwell Cross inscription for the h in almehttig. I 
suggest, then, that at the end of the eighth century someone 
was required to make an inscription which would have the 
appearance of a considerably earlier date, that is, it was 
deliberately an attempt at the end of the eighth century to 
imitate the appearance of the language of the beginning of 
that century. But the archaizer made mistakes and inconsis- 
tencies, as, for instance, the supposition that -i and -SB were 
employable indifferently as dative or instrumental endings, 
which caused him to write rodi for rodde and blodas for the 
correct form blodi. Similarly, he forgot to use the archaic 33 in 
walde, but put in here the form of his own times. The inscrip- 

1 Cf. J. L. N. O'Loughlin in Times Literary Supplement for 1931, p. 648. 

2 For the Urswick inscription well reproduced vide Collingwood, op. cit., 
p. 53, fig. 66. 

3 C. L. Wrenn : Late Old English Rune-names, in Medium Mvum I., 
pp. 24 et. seq., especially the Fuparc on p. 32. 


tion was to be connected with the memory of the considerably 
earlier Northumbrian king Alcfrith, and hence the deliberate 
archaizing added to the natural tendency of most inscriptions 
to introduce older or obsolescent forms of language. On this 
hypothesis I believe all the spellings and forms fall into place. 
We are looking at a late eighth century inscription carved in 
an early eighth century spelling, with the inevitable inconsis- 
tencies and errors : and thus both the linguistic and the 
artistic evidence are seen to be acceptable and mutually 

Here, then, the study of the spelling, when not sufficiently 
related to other kinds of evidence, led us astray. Yet it had 
value if considered in the light of all the evidence. 


One of the most frequent of the questionable uses of spelling 
made by philologists and historians of to-day is that of charters 
and similar " original " documents. Consider, for a moment, 
the case of Portisham in Dorset. It is generally agreed that in 
place-names the Old English spelling hamm points to derivation 
from hamm meadow, and ham to an original ham farm- 
house or homestead. Portisham, then, is set down by all the 
authorities as originally meaning the hamm or meadow of one 
Port (possibly the Port of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle who 
landed at Portsmouth). 1 For in a charter of Canute of the 
year 1024, the King gives to one Orcy land " eo in loco ubi 
ruricole terre illius nomen indidere set porteshamme." 2 The 
spelling of Domesday Book, Porteshd (= Portesham) need not 
contradict this view, though confusion between hamm and 
ham, even in later Anglo-Saxon charters, is by no means 
unknown. But it happens that Portisham was the home of 
the Nicholas of Guildford who acted as judge in the poetical 
debate recounted in the early Middle English poem The Owl 

1 Vide The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-names of Ekwall, 
and Anton Fagersten's The Place-names of Dorset, Uppsala 1933. But the 
latter authority does add the words (p. 248) " if the above charter-form 
can be trusted ". 

2 Vide no. 741 in Kemble's Codex Diplomaticus Mvi Saxonici, vol. IV. 


and the Nightingale : and in the dialect of both its extant 
MSS. the Western rounding of the vowel a to o before a nasal 
consonant in words like man, is regular. But the element 
hamm is never rounded to homm as a second element in place- 
names in any dialect where such rounding would be otherwise 
normal. The form PortesAom, therefore, which occurs at 
1. 1752 in both MSS. of The Owl and the Nightingale, should 
not show its second element horn as the equivalent of hamm. 
On looking more closely at the example from The Owl and 
the Nightingale, however, we notice that it rhymes with horn 
in the sense of " home ", with a long slack o (O.E. ham). 
This rhyme, in a poem which in general shows good craftsman- 
ship in its rhyming, can, I think, only mean that the -horn 
of Porteshom is in fact to be derived from the Old English 
ham = " homestead " and not from hamm = " meadow ". 
The spelling, then, of an early and well authenticated charter 
(the original document is in Lord Ilchester's muniment room 
at Melbury), has entirely misled the experts, simply because 
they have not considered it in conjunction with other kinds 
of evidence, which in this example happen to point conclusively 
in another direction. 

Here I would utter a strong caveat (as others have done 
before me) against this tendency to use charters exclusively 
as evidence, both in place-names and for the fixing of early 
pronunciation. Of the large number of printed documents 
purporting to reproduce diplomatic texts, only a relatively 
small quantity can be definitely authenticated as from originals 
in contemporary handwriting ; and again and again we find 
the historian or the philologist treating an inspeximus, 
written perhaps a couple of centuries after the original 
charter, as if it were itself the actual document, in every item 
of spelling, for which the law allowed it to be accepted. 
Moreover, how often is the charter found in the printed book 
(not to mention mistakes of its editor) a mere welter of different 
dialects and spellings. There is the likelihood especially in 
early Middle English MSS. of confusion in orthography 
caused by (a) foreign scribes insufficiently familiar with English 


usages, (b) a scribe educated in a spelling-tradition other than 
that of the text he is copying or the practice of the person 
dictating to him, (c) scribes from different dialect-areas 
replacing what they copy or hear from dictation by representa- 
tions of their own more familiar pronunciation, (d) men 
merely writing their version of a lost charter from their own 
memory, and (e) clerks of such strongly traditional centres as 
the royal chancellery replacing forms they copy or hear by 
those of the established traditional orthography of their 
calling. What a welter, for instance, of incongruous forms of 
spellings is the famous Codex Wintoniensis, part of which is 
printed in Kemble's Codex Diplomaticus Mm Saxonici Vol. 
VI ! 1 The cartulary of Chertsey Abbey would be a dangerous 
guide to the early Surrey dialect. 2 For it not only shows many 
mutually inconsistent types of dialect and spelling, but seems 
(at least in parts) to have been transcribed by a clerk from 
somewhere in the West of England. Unless we could be sure 
that a document in this collection had been written at the 
date on its face by a scribe who was a native of Chertsey 
living for long in that area and uninfluenced by other traditions 
of orthography, we could not take its spellings in themselves 
as evidence for the language of Chertsey at a given date. 
There is, too, the possibility of endorsements or additions to 
charters made at a later date than the original document or 
by writers of other linguistic and orthographic character than 
those of the archetypal scribe : and this again has misled 
philologists at times. The Paston Letters, with the added 
errors of the modern editor and printer, have often been 
used by historians of our language and spelling as if in them- 
selves they were first-class evidence. But Miss Kilboom has 
shown 3 that, for instance, Margaret Paston (whose spellings 
had been widely cited as evidence for contemporary pronuncia- 
tion) nearly always employed a secretary ; and she, probably, 

1 Codex Wintoniensis is now MS. Add. 15350 in the British Museum. 

2 The Cartulary of Chertsey Abbey, published for the Surrey Record 
Society : 1915 and 1931. 

3 Asta Kilboom : Contributions to the History of Fifteenth-century English. 
Uppsala, 1926. 


was a lady of East Anglia with some local characteristics of 
pronunciation, dictating to a scribe who came from a different 
area whose ear for the finer points of pronunciation was not 
good. One may compare, as an extreme instance of errors 
arising from dictation of this kind, the famous " Crimean 
Gothic ", which rests on no other foundation than that of a 
hastily written list of some hundred words which Busbecq 
thought he heard from two men who had been in the Crimea, 
neither of whom was a native speaker of the alleged Gothic : 
and Busbecq seems to have had a poor ear for sounds of 
foreign tongues and to have had no clear idea of a method of 
phonetic transcription. Only through a coating of Low 
German re-formations and analogies besides all kinds of 
other errors in hearing and transcribing can the persevering 
philologist penetrate to the tiny modicum of Gothic which 
undoubtedly lies concealed in Busbecq's word-list. Moreover, 
Busbecq has been unfortunate in his printers. 

Place-names have been a fruitful field of error through 
spellings producing false analogical forms or those based on 
what are sometimes called " folk-etymologies ". The Coryates, 
a little cutting (O.E. corfgeat) through the ridge of hills above 
Portisham, in Dorset, which has formed part of the parish 
boundary since the reign of Canute, has constantly been 
confused with Corfe Castle, some 22 miles away from it, 
because of doubtful assumptions based on spelling. The later 
MSS. of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle report King Edward the 
Martyr as having been slain set corfes geate. Now this was 
probably The Coryates, which is noted as part of the boundary 
of Canute's gift of land to Orcy in 1024 at Portisham already 
cited, in the words swa on corf getes westran cotan. The name 
may mean " the geat or entrance to the corf or cutting ", and 
The Coryates seems a likely place for an ambush such as 
befell the young king. But the Anglo-Norman chroniclers and 
others, being familiar with the existence of Corfe Castle with 
its fortress, identified the corfes geat of the Chronicle with the 
gate of Corfe, i.e. its castle gate : and hence the murdered king 
has generally been unquestioningly regarded as having been 


killed at Corfe Castle. In Durham is a little place which 
was once the summer retreat of the monks and was called by 
them beau repaire : but the second e of repaire was misread 
as a c, and then later readers of documents in which the word 
occurred (usually written as one word beaurepayrc = beau 
repaire), interpreted it by further analogy and confusion as 
Bear Park, the name it now bears. I remember hearing a local 
tradition in the neighbourhood that Bear Park was so named 
because of the bear-baiting practised there in Queen 
Elizabeth's days ! 1 

We must, then, before using the orthography of a document 
as evidence, be sure that we know that its scribe is likely to be 
a reliable witness. We must also compare it fully with all the 
available evidences of other kinds. 


The above reflexions lead me to speak of that small yet 
most interesting and sometimes valuable group of the philo- 
logist's illegitimate children, ghost-words. I use this term to 
describe those forms or words which begin by having no other 
existence than that begotten in the mind of scribe, compositor, 
editor, or lexicographer, but which later come to lead a life 
of their own in the language. 

Both MSS. of The Owl and the Nightingale have the word 
atprenche in 1. 248 a mistake for atwrenche made in the lost 
text which lies between these MSS. and the archetypal text, 
through the common early Middle English confusion of the 
runic symbol wynn ( = w) and p. This atprenche occurs again 
at 1. 814 ; and in both passages the correct form atwrenche 
(meaning " to outdo in trickery " or "to escape by wiles ") 
makes excellent sense. Yet editors have, as it were, sought to 
" prink and prank out " an etymology for this ghost- word 
atprenche, which has thus come to lead a continued, if 
precarious life in learned works. But the expected atwrenchen 
(in the forms etwrenchen and edwrenchen) had occurred in the 
Bodley MS. 34 version of the early thirteenth-century life of S. 

1 The name occurs as beau repayre in the Feodarium Prioratus Dunel- 
mensis, published as No. 58 in the Surtees Society's series. 


Margaret, and the Oxford English Dictionary had rightly cited 
the example in The Owl and the Nightingale as atwrenche : 
and further, the meaning is confirmed by a parallel passage 
in the British Museum MS. Royal 17 A XXVII of the same life 
of St. Margaret. For in one place this MS. reads etsterten for the 
etwrenchen of the other text. 1 The name wen for the Runic 
symbol wynn has survived apparently longer than the expected 
win (from wynn) into early Middle English, but naturally 
retains in the MSS. of Kentish and South-Eastern origin the 
form wen. Scribes of probably foreign origin practise the 
unfamiliar Saxon symbol for w (along with ]? and 6 and 3) 
before beginning their task for the day in such texts as the 
Digby version of the Poema Morale and the Maidstone MS. 
of the Proverbs of Alfred ; and they write the sound they hear 
around them in the area of Kent and the South-East, as wen. 
But this probably only dialectal form wen, from the South- 
East of England, has become the accepted name for wynn 
in most text-books. 2 

Chatterton's romantic forms, such as smethe (to rhyme with 
ethe) meaning smoke, and ryne (to rhyme with twyne) meaning 
run, have been condemned as mere errors of ignorance or 
deliberate fabrications to get visual rhymes by the young poet. 
But in many a fifteenth-century MS. c and t are scarcely 
to be distinguished or have been miswritten the one for the 
other ; and Chatterton's smethe is perhaps a correct copy of 
a MS. (or early printed text) which wrongly had this form for 
the ordinary M.E. form smeche. Similarly, ryne is a quite 
common spelling in the fifteenth century for the Northern form 
rin = " run ", with the final e as a mere graphic flourish : 
and Chatterton has merely used what he found. But his 
attitude to spelling is romantic, in that he is quite indifferent 
to pronunciation or proper locality or date in choosing his 
forms, so long as they please his eye and suggest some sort of 
old-world associations. 

1 Cf. Seinte Marherete, ed. for the Early English Text Society by Frances 
M. Mack, 1934 : pp. 32/5 and 33/3, 36/4 and 37/4. 

2 Cf. Medium Mvum I., pp. 24 et seq. 



But there are some good and established gifts to our 
literary vocabulary due to error in orthography producing 
ghost- words. Lovers of our language would be most unwilling 
to lose the originally falsely spelled and misunderstood 
derring-do which Spenser first gave to our language through 
his misunderstanding a misprinted passage in Lydgate 
based on Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde. Scott's " deeds of 
derring-do " has extended this word of Spenser's into prose. 1 
Many, again, would not willingly give up what is probably the 
ghost-word muing in the famous passage in Milton's Areo- 
pagitica describing our nation as "an Eagle muing her 
mighty youth " ; though even the O.E.D. has to admit 
uncertainty as to its exact meaning. In an article in 
Modern Language Notes convincing reasons have been 
given for regarding this muing, which has secured for itself 
an honoured place in English literature through Milton's 
" purple passage ", as in fact a printer's error for newing 
= renewing. But if Milton merely wrote " newing her mighty 
youth " (an almost traditional expression), then all the 
undoubted aesthetic appeal of the phrase is gone. 2 

A mere compositor is said to have been responsible for 
giving us the key- word in the well known and admired descrip- 
tion of Virgil by Tennyson : 

" All the charms of all the Muses 
Often flowering in one lonely line." 

What the poet had written and sent to press was lovely, not 
lonely, which latter word seems at first to have been entirely 
due to the misreading by the compositor of the v of Tennyson's 
inept and conventional lovely as an n, thus producing the so 
apt and felicitous lonely. 

By contrast with this last example of accidental spelling 
producing valuable results, compare the ghost-word adventine, 
now happily laid by the O.E.D., which Dr. Johnson listed in 

1 S.v. The Oxford English Dictionary for the details. 

2 Vol. XXXII of 1917, R. S. Loomis : A Note on Areopageitica. But 
cf. G. Udny Yule in Review of English Studies of January and October, 


his Dictionary from either a misreading of the u of adventiue in 
Bacon's Advancement of Learning or a misprinted copy of this 
work in which the u appeared as n (a particularly common 
error). This little ghost has neither interest nor importance. 

From ghost-words I pass to the related matter of 
" occasional " spellings in their begetting of what might be 
called " ghost-pronunciations " in the minds of philologists : 
and these find their place in histories of the language and in 
the establishing by editors of the dialectal characteristics of 
texts. Probably the most fruitful source of these " ghost- 
pronunciations " is the failure to distinguish between the 
accidents of scribal practice and spellings which may have 
phonetic or phonological significance. Thus, for example, in 
Beowulf 1. 516 occurs the phrase weol wintry s wylm : and the 
learned have offered explanations of this genitive singular in 
ys. Yet it seems clear that the y of wintrys is merely a ditto- 
graphic anticipation of that of wylm a palseographic accident 
which has nothing whatever to do with grammar or pronuncia- 
tion. Similarly, an isolated spelling siche for the normal 
seche = " to seek " in the later Otho MS. of Lasamon's Brut 
has caused conjecture that the raising of [e] to [I] usually 
thought of as occurring in the fifteenth century, may already 
have occurred in some area, so that the Otho scribe of the 
late thirteenth century inadvertently substituted his natural 
pronunciation for the traditional spelling seche. But when we 
observe several i's near this form siche (for which the earlier 
Caligula text has seche), we shall probably prefer to assume 
once more a mere palaeographical accident of no linguistic 
significance whatever. I would plead strongly for far more 
consideration of the palaeographical factors in relation to 
spelling than they have generally hitherto received. 

Kelated to this matter of " ghost-pronunciations " is that 
of imaginary grammatical peculiarities which are, in fact, the 
result of careless or illiterate spelling. In the Exeter Book of 
the end of the tenth century, the scribe of The Seafarer 


wrote in 1. 48 the clause bearwas blostmum nimad, and 
commentators have often discussed this very strange dative 
plural in blostmum governed by the verb nimad. But it is a 
fact, I believe, that by the tenth century the unstressed 
vowels a, e, o and u had all been levelled in final syllables in 
Old English to a schwa [a], and that the final m in the unstressed 
position had come to be sounded as n. Hence blostmum 
(dat.) and the expected blostman (ace.) would sound to a 
scribe who was writing from dictation exactly alike. He 
would only distinguish between the endings -um and -an when 
consciously following the traditional spelling ; and in a 
moment of inadvertance, for him the by now purely artificial 
distinction would be lost. One may compare the phrase of 
psem hatum bsede in ^Elfric's homily on the Assumption of 
St. John, where traditional orthography and the rules of 
grammar would seem to have required the weak form of the 
adjective hatan after the definite article psem. 


There is, indeed, a " philological scribe " just as there used 
to be the " economic man " a scribe whose every vagary is 
a linguistic fact which can be used as evidence, whose every 
orthographic divagation from the expected has phonetic 
or phonological significance. It is against this " philological 
scribe " that I would protest that he is so often only a ghost. 
How many of the spellings of what we call in common parlance 
an " illiterate person " have really anything to do with his 
pronunciations ? So many of them are, I think, rather to be 
explained by all kinds of palseographical, psychological, 
mechanical, or associational factors. I have already given 
some instances of what I have in mind, and I now add one or 
two more illustrations. Sir John Paston's spelling (found a 
number of times) trought = truth, may suggest that in his 
pronunciation the gh of words like through was more or less 
silent, since it seems that by association with such words as 
through he introduced the gh into trought. But it would be 
absurd to argue that he sounded as a t the voiceless spirant 


in truth merely because he writes t instead of ih. For we have 
to reckon with the common practice (ultimately derived from 
the mediaeval Latin habit of using t and ih indifferently for t, 
which survives in a spelling of the proper name Anthony) of 
using t and ih interchangeably for both the sound of t and 
the voiceless spirant. An interesting and amusing example of 
how the experts may fall into error through accepting a 
scribal or printer's spelling as having value for pronunciation 
in itself without regard to other kinds of evidence, is furnished 
by a passage in Shakespeare's Hamlet. In Act i, sc. 1, 1. 112, 
occurs the line 

A Mote it is to trouble the Mindes eye. 

Here the First Folio and the later Quartos 5 and 6 have Mote, 
and the reference is obviously to the Scriptural text of the 
mote and the beam. 1 But the Second Quarto, followed by the 
third and fourth, reads Moth instead of Mote, with the common 
spelling of ih for t. Long ago Dowden, in his edition of the play, 
rightly dismissed this Moth as " an obsolete spelling of Mote " : 
yet recent scholarship of the " bibliographical " school, would 
regard Moth as representing the word moth (the insect), and 
Mr. Eidley in The Temple Shakespeare, for instance, would 
imply that Shakespeare intended a moth to trouble the mind's 
eye. Here, then, isolated regard for spelling has led the modern 
commentators into what I take to be a false and un-Shakes- 
pearean mishandling of a characteristic passage. 

In the notorious crux of Hamlet 1, 2, 129 

0, that this too too solid flesh would melt, 
I think that, in considering the rival claims of the Quartos' 
sallied, the later conjecture sullied and the First Folio's solid, 
one should bear in mind nor merely spellings, but the known 
Elizabethan pronunciation sometimes of o as a : so that solid 
might be pronounced as solid. Spenser rhymes plot both as 
plot and plat, Elizabeth herself wrote stop as stap, and Shakes- 
peare rhymed dally with folly, etc., etc. 2 

One may be tempted to suspect that the " philological 

1 St. Matthew, VII, 4-5. 

2 The Rape of Lucrece, 11. 554 and 556. 


scribe " has been at work behind Miss M. Daunt 's very 
attractive theory of the nature of the Old English 
" breaking ".* For she seems to assume that the palatal or 
rounded quality believed to exist in certain Old Irish con- 
sonants and sometimes indicated in writing by respectively the 
glide- vowels i and u, found an echo in the Old English tradition 
of scribes whose forerunners had learned their craft from 
Irish missionaries. She appears to assume that, for instance, 
a clear distinction is intended of the front and back qualities 
or colourings of the r in the Old Irish word for man by the 
writing of the dative singular as fiur (rounded r) as against 
the genitive fir (palatal r). She then supposes that this 
distinction between the colouring of consonants was carried 
over and extended and systematized in Old English : so that, 
for example, the o in seolh is merely a graphic way of showing 
that the I is a back sound, and a clear phonematic distinction 
is drawn by the scribes between the front and the back types of 
I and final r by means of the insertion of merely graphic vowels 
to mark the back quality as assumed in the Irish dative fiur. 
But in view of the very limited and sporadic amount of 
material for the study of Old Irish spelling on which our 
theory must be based, and of the lack of anything like consis- 
tency or regularity in Old Irish Orthography, I doubt if we are 
in a position to check the hypothesis fully : and it is hard to 
believe that in such a word as O.E. feorh the o is merely 
graphic, while in beodan it must be part of a historical diph- 
thong. Moreover the degree of phonematic consciousness 
implied would be extraordinary. 

Nevertheless it is but fair to end this section of my Caveats 
by remarking that spelling as evidence has performed very 
valuable work for the restoration of some Middle English 
texts through their rhymes. A glance at the apparatus, for 
instance, of any well edited Middle English text will show how 
a study of the orthography of the rhyme-words in a poem, if 
related to appropriate other kinds of evidence, may point 

1 Old English Sound-changes considered in Relation to Scribal Tradition 
and Practice. Transactions of the Philological Society for 1939, pp. 108-137. 


the way to an original reading lost through errors in scribal 
transmission or to the original dialect of the poem. Thus in 
Sir Orfeo, 1. 362, the spelling of the Auchinlek MS. anmal 
(misread by the editors as animal) is of decisive value if 
considered beside the forms corresponding in the other two ver- 
sions. In the couplet which appears in the Auchinlek MS. as 

]?e vousour was anowed al 
Of ich maner diuers anmal 

the early fifteenth-century Ashmole version has emell for the 
anmal of Auchinlek (2nd quarter of fourteenth century) ; and 
this suggests, as Zielke long ago remarked, that the original 
rhyme-word was some form of the ancestor of the modern 
French email. Now Sir Launfal, another Breton lay, has the 
form amall at 1. 270. 1 But the Harleian version of Sir Orfeo 
(late fifteenth century) has metall, which looks like a 
modernizing of the general meaning of amal while still pre- 
serving the rhyme. Auchinlek's anmal, then, may well be 
an error for aumal (u and n scribal confusion), which is a quite 
plausible form of amal. The couplet may conjecturally be 
reconstructed thus, allowing for some 50 years of scribal 
blundering : 

]?e vousour was anow(rn)ed al 

Of ilke manere of aumal. 2 

Again, the spelling of the word for " away " as owy at 
lines 94 and 559 of Sir Orfeo, confirmed as they both are by 
the requirement of the rhyme, seems to point to the original 
dialect having been some kind of South-Eastern or S.E. 
Midland : and this is strongly corroborated by other evidence. 
A fascinating little problem in the relationship between 
spelling and pronunciation is presented by the various forms 
of Bristol. Though in the English examples the form with 
final II or I does not appear before the end of the twelfth 
century (Bristoll circ. 1200), it seems that the Latin Bristolia 
can be found but little later (if at all) than the early examples 
of Brycgstow and Bristow, which begin about Edward the 

1 V. Sir Orfeo ed. Zielke (Breslau 1880), especially the note on p. 125. 

2 Cf. for the reading anow(rn)ed the text of Sir Orfeo in K. Sisam's Four- 
teenth Century Verse and Prose, Oxford 1923. 

PHTLO. TRANS. 1944. D 


Confessor's time. What is the connection of this I in Bristol 
(compared with Bristow, etc.) with the well known final 
post-vocalic I found in the Bristol dialect of to-day, in such 
words as Victorial (Victoria) and ideal (idea) ? 


The orthography of rhymes as a criterion for pronunciation 
has been widely used by historians of the English language, 
and I think that very often it has been used far too confidently. 
Professor Wyld's outstanding little book on rhymes 1 has had 
too wide and undiscriminating a following, and the cautions 
he recommended there have been but little regarded. 

The popularizing of the results of printing effected a 
revolution in poetry which especially concerns the validity of 
rhymes. More and more since Elizabeth's time the poet has 
tended to address himself to readers rather than to hearers : 
and the restraint on rhyming vagaries or carelessness provided 
by the assumed presence of an audience who must, at least 
approximately, hear the rhyme, has almost ceased to have 
importance in modern English. I would suggest five types of 
rhyme which are especially likely to become sources of 
erroneous conclusions about pronunciation unless carefully 
checked against other evidence. There is, first, the mere 
careless rhyme of the beginner, dependent alone on spelling, 
such as Milton's rhyming of foul and soul in his paraphrases of 
Psalms (though he was later a very accurate rhymer) : or 
there is the simple visual or spelling rhyme like Pope's owls 
and fools in The Dunciod. Such rhymes, having only an appeal 
to the eye, can have no significance for pronunciation. 
Secondly, there are what may be called traditional rhymes : 
and these are a plentiful source of error. By " traditional " 
rhymes I mean those which were originally true from the 
linguistic point of view, have become part of the accepted 
machinery of poetry, and thus have continued in use long 
after their pronunciation has so changed as to leave the words 

1 H. C. Wyld : Studies in English Rhymes from Surrey to Pope ; London 


unsimilar except in spelling. Of this type is Milton's rhyming 
of hand and wand : for this was an excellent rhyme in the 
Middle English period, but ceased to be true linguistically as 
soon as the w of wand had come to round the vowel following. 
Now whether this rhyme is to be reckoned as indicating 
Milton's actual pronunciation or merely as traditional (and 
therefore not indicative of anything in pronunciation) will 
depend on the date by which the w of such words had come 
to change the nature of the following vowel. But Sir John 
Paston in the late fifteenth century already frequently writes 
wosh for wash, and there is plenty of evidence to show that 
the change which makes this rhyme of hand and wand appear 
to us as merely visual or orthographic, had in fact taken place 
more than a century before Milton used it. Such traditional 
rhymes, then, can have no value as evidence for pronunciation. 

Then there are what I call " true plus " rhymes like Spenser's 
arre and /arre. These are rhymes which are true in sound, but 
whose orthography has been adjusted by poet or printer to 
make a rhyme to the eye as well as to the ear. In farre, 
Spenser has a correct historical form, if a little archaic. 
He (or his printer) then adjusts the spelling of are to 
arre (which is quite unhistorical) to make an eye-rhyme of 
that which is already a true sound-rhyme. 

Here it may be added that very often the spelling of early 
printed texts, which has been taken to represent the author, 
merely indicates the practice of particular printers, and that 
it is dangerous to assume that it represents anything in regard 
to the author's practice unless there is evidence of another 
kind to suggest this. For example, it is often noticed that 
Spenser seems to have played experimentally with the possible 
aesthetic effects of orthography in his Shepheardes Calender. Yet 
we find that the extant copies of its first printed edition do not 
agree fully with each other in spelling ; and printers often made 
changes in orthography while the book was actually in process 
of being printed. I have myself seen a copy of Spenser's 
Complaints in the library of Queen's College, Oxford, which 
does not seem to agree with others of the same first quarto. 


Miss Darbishire's edition of the photographed MS. of the first 
book of Paradise Lost and her introductory essay on Milton's 
spelling, throw valuable light on the complex relations between 
author and printer in Charles II's days ; and the full study by 
Dr. Percy Simpson of this question l over a far wider period 
should be carefully pondered by all who wish to write on an 
author's pronunciation as evidenced by his spelling. 

Fourthly, there are what for want of a better name I 
call traditional spelling-rhymes. These are those which were, 
in the early modern period, based simply on spelling and were 
therefore linguistically incorrect. But they differ from other 
visual rhymes because they have been used by outstanding 
poets whose example or influence has caused them to be 
accepted into the common poetical machinery. Of this 
traditional-spelling class is the rhyme of love and grove, first 
used, I believe by Marlowe and Spenser, though entirely 
without any basis in pronunciation historically, but ever 
since accepted as a good rhyme. At no time could these words 
have rhymed truly, since the one in Middle English would have 
had a tense and the other a slack o ; and earlier than that they 
had no vowel resemblance at all. 

Lastly, there are rhymes which are only approximate simply 
because the poet was careless in craftsmanship or in using his 
ears, or was deliberately aiming at popular or comic effects. 
On such rhymes no argument as to pronunciation should be 
based. But how are these careless rhymes to be detected in an 
earlier period of pronunciation whose details are themselves 
not fully known to us ? The answer must be, I would suggest, 
that the rhymes of each poet must be judged in the light of 
his general craftsmanship and practice. Thus, for instance, 
we may note that Keats is a far more careful or true rhymer 
than most of his great contemporaries, and the same observa- 
tion may be made of Milton. When, therefore, we find Keats 
rhyming the salt sea-spry with eye in his Endymion, 2 the 

1 Percy Simpson : Proof-reading in the IQth, llth, and 18th Centuries : 
Oxford, 1935. 

2 V. Endymion, Book IV 1. 157. 


commentators are right to attach significance to the pronuncia- 
tion spry [sprai] of our word spray. But when they proceed, 
as does Mr. Garrod in his definitive edition of Keats' poems, 
to argue that this pronunciation arose from Keats' " Cockney " 
habits of speech, we must protest that at the poet's time both 
the pronunciations implied in the spellings spray and spry 
were good current English, though the latter was becoming 
old-fashioned. The Oxford English Dictionary makes this 
abundantly clear, and it was because it was not fully consulted 
that the error about the " Cockneyism " of Keats' spry 
became possible. Wordsworth's rhyme of, say, bosom and 
blossom, proves of no value because a general study of his 
craftsmanship of rhyme shows him to have been less exact 
than many. Again the rhyme of gave you a with Saviour in 
Gerard Manley Hopkins, in the light of what we otherwise 
know of him, is probably merely a deliberate approximation. 


In the foregoing very desultory remarks, I have principally 
sought to stress four dangers which confront the historical 
philologist. These may be roughly grouped as dangers of the 
isolated use of the occasional spelling in the handling of texts, 
the too much isolating and stressing of orthography in rhymes, 
the tendency to see significance in every least variant of 
spelling (as for example in the writings of private letters) a 
tendency to " hunt the letter " as it were ; and lastly, the 
danger arising from the fact that the very staticness of our 
spelling in English often leads to an increased and exaggerated 
sensitiveness on the part of the philologist to every kind of 
vagary of orthography. I would not, however, be thought to 
be merely the enemy of the " occasional spelling " : for there 
are plenty of instances of its great value, provided that such 
forms are not treated in isolation. Thus, for example, I would 
reject much of the curious spelling of Lady Margaret Hoby 
as merely the sort of thing one expects in a woman of good 
birth at the end of Elizabeth's reign. But when I find this 
lady almost regularly writing the past tense of the verb " to 


write " as wrett, I accept this as significant, because I know 
of this type of spelling as likely to represent a Northern or N. 
Midland pronunciation at the time, that the Lady Margaret 
Hoby lived for long at Hackness and was of that part of 
England by birth, etc., etc. 1 

The founder of the Society's great Dictionary wished, as 
I said at the beginning of this address, for the " gradual 
partial correction of our spelling " ; while his contemporary 
A. J. Ellis (to whom also our Society owes so much) desired 
a parallel phonetic spelling which should exist side-by-side 
with the conventional orthography until it at length might 
overcome it : for Ellis considered any reform which sought to 
adjust our present orthography by Murray's slow method as 
" hopeless ". But both Murray and Ellis agreed in aiming at 
and looking forward to the education of the public of this 
country into sensitiveness to the value of the phonetic relation- 
ship between sound and spelling such as the Germans have 
sought for themselves. Yet there is a real value, I believe, 
too in the staticness of our spelling in the permanence it may 
give to written forms and the relative independence of time 
and place which may arise from it. For in so far as our ortho- 
graphy is symbolic and ideographic rather than phonetic, it 
remains unruffled by those changes in pronunciation from 
which no language can escape. The periodic revision of our 
spelling might mean that a student in the year 10,000 would 
have to contemplate several types of orthography in addition 
to those that our history has already thrown up, in order to 
study our literature as a whole. Moreover, one may correspond 
comfortably with a friend in the Australian Bush or with 
English-knowing Indians, though mutual understanding of 
pronunciation is hardly to be come by, and a phonetic presenta- 
tion of the facts would be complicated. The Chinese have a 
mainly symbolic method of writing which is independent of 
sound or time or place. I have never known a Chinese student 
make a mistake in spelling English, though because of this same 

1 The Diary of Lady Margaret Hoby, 1599 to 1605, ed. by Dorothy M. 
Meads ; London, 1930. 


ideographic orthography the philologists have found the 
problem of the pronunciation of older Chinese a very hard 
nut to crack. 

What I would chiefly stress is that philologists, while being 
fully sensitive to the possibilities and advantages of both the 
phonetic and the ideographic and symbolic attitudes to 
orthography ready to explore and take advantage of both 
methods of sound-symbol relationship, while being conscious 
also of the inevitable time-lag between the pronunciation of 
a language at a given moment and its graphic expression in a 
way of orthography, should, in handling spelling as evidence, 
explore always all the concomitant related factors. It is not 
my concern to-day to discuss the pros and cons of the schemes 
of the Society for Simplified Spelling. The stage-Frenchman 
is said to have proposed as the spelling of the word fish the 
letters g h o t i : gh as in laugh, o as in women and ti as in 
nation. But though such a farcical reductio ad absurdum has 
its point, I am primarily engaged now neither in the destruc- 
tion nor the preservation of that heterogeneous historical 
character of our spelling which I have compared to amber : 
I am only anxious to dot the i's and cross the t's of some 
important considerations which must, in my -view, be had in 
mind by the historical philologist in using English orthography 
as evidence. That it may have great and real value to the 
historian of the language, none will doubt. 




The Formation of the Subjunctive Stem in Irish, and the 
Problem of the Indo-European Future. 

[Beside the reduplicated s-future in Irish there is an un- 
reduplicated form, identical with the s-subjunctive, and 
comparable to the ordinary Greek future. Pedersen has 
sought to show that the sigmatic future in Indo-European is 
based on a stem in -es- opposed to an aorist subjunctive in 
-so-. Brugmann's doctrine that the sigmatic future and the 
subjunctive of the s-aorist have a common origin is preferable.] 

THE two Irish subjunctive stems, that in -a- and that in 
-s-, are generally explained as related to aorist forms of other 
Indo-European languages l ; and in this respect Irish seems 
to have preserved the original system. Schwyzer observes 
that in Homer beside St'So^i, fy/u, IOTTJ/U; riO^fja no present 
subjunctive forms occur (except pedi^uri, II. 13, 234), 
while the aorist subjunctive is frequent, 2 and his conclusion 
that subjunctive and optative moods were formed originally 
only from aorist stems confirms an earlier suggestion by 
Hirt. 3 

The s-subjunctive in Irish shows thematic inflexion, as is 
proper to the subjunctive, except in the act. sg. 3 and dep. sg. 
2 and 3, which can be old injunctive forms : -tias, -teis, -tei, 
-tiasam, -tesid, -tiasat < *steigh-s-o, *steigh-s-ei, *steigh-s-t, 
etc. ; -messur, -messer, -mestar < *med-s-or, *med-s-ter, *med- 
s-tro.* The reason for the presence of the non-thematic form 

1 Thurneysen, Hdb. 594 ; Lewis and Pedersen, Concise Celtic Grammar 

2 Griechische Grammatik p. 687. 

3 Ibid. 790, footnote 1 ; cf. H. Hirt, Hdb. d. Gr. Laut- u. Formenlehre 

4 s. Lewis and Pedersen, op. cit. 469. 


in the active may lie in the fact that act. sg. 3 *steigh-se-t 
would become -*teis, identical with sg. 2. Dep. *med-se-ter, 
*med-se-tro would result in *mester, *messethar, yielding a 
satisfactory paradigm, and I can suggest no good reason for 
the intrusion of non-thematic inflexion into the deponent. 
The sg. 3 may have followed the active form. The result of 
the non-thematic inflexion of the act. sg. 3 has been the 
appearance of forms, well-known to Celtists as among the most 
curious phenomena of the Irish verbal system, in which only 
pre-verbs survive : scuichid ' ends ' : subj. pres. sg. 3, with 
perfective ro, -roisc, showing the root initial ; do-coi l that he 
may go ' < *di-kom-uet-s : prototonic -dich, where most of 
the second preverb has fallen off with the stem, and we are 
left with a mere preverb and the initial consonant of a second. 
Similarly du-diat ' leads ' : du-di < *to-di-uedh-s-t ; as-indet 
' tells ' : as-ind < *eks-inde-ueidh-s-t ; but in-fd, when only 
one preverb is present. 1 

These forms are instructive in connection with the modern 
technique of descriptive grammar in terms of structure, and 
the tendency to disregard the historical method. How is one 
to cope with a language which defies its own structure, and 
allows phonological law to change forms beyond recognition 
while memory holds them together ? Ad-fet ' tells ', and pres. 
subj. sg. 1 ad-cous 2 < *ad-kom-ueid-so with perfective 
-kom-) were held together, as it were, by memory, and 
recognized, no doubt, as parts of the same verb. The perfective 
particle can be omitted and the subjunctive forms are sg. 1 
ad-fias, 3 ad-fei, ad-fe (which do not happen to be attested), 
much closer in form to the indicative. 

Corresponding to the two subjunctive stems are future 
stems in -a- and -s- respectively which differ from them only 
in the presence of reduplication, the reduplicating vowel being 
i : guidid (7rodea>) ' prays ' : subjunctive -gess, -geiss, -ge 
(Oeaaaadai) : future -gigius, -gigis, -*gig. This s-future 
has been identified with the Sanskrit desiderative : pac : 

1 Thurneysen, Hbd. 625. 

2 sg. 3 is not attested ; *ad-coe, *ad-coi, prototonic -*accae. 


pipaksati ; pa : pipdsati, pipisati, 1 and the a-future perhaps 
represents an old parallel formation which has survived only 
in Irish. But it is the s-future which I wish to discuss. 

Beside the reduplicated forms there occur future forms of 
seven verbs which have the s-sumx without reduplication 
and are therefore identical with the subjunctive. The verbs 
are aingid l protects ' ; aness- ; laigid l lies ' : less- ; ar-nedt 
' waits ' : -ness- ; at-raig ' rises ' : -ress- ; rethid ' runs ' : 
ress- ; saidid ' sits ' : sess- ; techid ' flees ' : tess-. Thurneysen 
convincingly identified this formation with the Greek s-future, 
pointing to less- : Ae'^o/zai ; ress- : opegaj ; sess- : /ca0e'cja>, 
and he held it as proven by Schulze (Kleine Schriften 107) 
that it was not originally an aorist subjunctive (144), but a 
west Indo-European desiderative-future. He explains it as 
a blend of the Sanskrit future in -sio (with e-grade) and 
desiderative in -so (with reduplication and zero-grade), which 
in Greek became the normal form, 2 while in Irish the old 
Indo-European desiderative and the by-form without 
reduplication both survived (145). 

We are thus invited to distinguish in Irish between an 
s-subjunctive, formed from an aorist stem, and an s-future, 
identical in form, which represents an old ' west Indo-Euro- 
pean ' desiderative or future in -se/o-. But meanwhile the 
latter is generally explained as containing a suffix -s- which 
formed present and aorist stems 3 : ae'f to, ava> beside augeo ; 
aAe'f a = rdksati ; mso, and Schwyzer, with Brugmann, 
recognizes this suflix in the (non-thematic) s-aorist and the 
(thematic) s-future. 4 He later denies that the Greek s-future is 
subjunctive of an s-aorist, agreeing with Thurneysen, on the 
ground that verbs which have no s-aorist do form a future 

1 Thurneysen, IF 38, 144. The oldest Sanskrit forms show the zero grade 
of the root, and traces of this ablaut are present in Irish, s. Thurneysen ib. ; 
Lewis and Pedersen, op. cit. 456, note 1 (6). 

2 For the reduplicated future in Greek s. Schwyzer, Gr. Gram. p. 782. 

3 Brugmann, Grundriss 2 II 3 255, et seq. ; 300. Schulze had cast 
some doubt upon this doctrine (Kleine Schriften 109), in connection with the 
Lithuanian accent-system. The point he raised is beyond my competence, 
but Brugmann disregards it. 

4 Gr. Gram. 706-07 389 


in s, and that the asigmatic subjunctive is rarely future in 
meaning. 1 

There seems to me to be some confusion here, or at least 
the possibility of misunderstanding. It is clear that the Greek 
future is not built upon the s-aorist in Greek, since the two 
formations appear independently : Tracr^co Treicro/zai 7radov ; 
Xajjifidvaj Arji/rojitat eXafiov. 2 But I do not find that Brugmann 
supposed that it was. His formula is : ' Formen voluntativ- 
futurischen Sinnes, die ihren Bildungselementen nach wie 
Konjunktive von s-Aoristen erscheinen '. 3 Later he points 
out that the thematic vowel occurs in the imperative of non- 
thematic aorists in both Sanskrit and Greek : nesa, oicre, and 
observes : ' Diese so-Formen zeigen wie unscharf die Grenzen 
zwischen -so- als Bildungselement des Konj . des s- Aorists und 
als Bildungselement eines themavokalischen Indikativs mit 
voluntativer oder prospektiver Bedeuntung ursprunglich 
waren *. 4 

The old theory still seems to me the simplest and the best, 
namely that the s-future and the short vowel subjunctive of 
an 5-aorist are identical in origin. Pedersen dismissed as a 
hopeless expedient Brugmann's theory that aorist subjunctive 
and future were originally the same thing. He admitted the 
affinity between aorist and future, but stressed the fact that 
neither in Greek nor in Sanskrit is the future limited to the 
perfective aspect. 5 He then sought to show that there was, in 
the Indo-European period, a distinct future formation, closely 
akin to the aorist, but distinguished from it by the fact that 
the future had the normal grade -es- in the suffix (presumably 
with a reduced grade of the root in the original forms), while 

1 ib. 787 ; c/. f Buck, Comparative Gr. of Greek and Latin 389. It is doubt- 
ful whether future meaning is less frequent in the asigmatic forms, s. 
Hopkins, AJP 13, 32 f. ; Whitney, ib. 293-94. Delbruck replied to Hopkins, 
Grundriss IV ii, 243 f. ; but s. Brugmann, Grundriss* II iii 524, 836. 

* s. Schwyzer, op. cit. p. 781 for many other examples. 

3 op. cit* II 3 p. 384. 

4 ib. p. 423. 

5 * Les Formes sigmatiques du verbe latin et le~probleme du futur indo- 
europeen,' Det Kgl Danske Videnskab. Selskab., Hist-fil. Medd. Ill 5 (1921) 7, 
24-25 ; cf. Grundriss* II 3, 385. 


the aorist had the reduced grade -s- in the suffix, both originally 
non- thematic. He found survivals of this future inflexion in 
Oscan pertemest, Umbrian ferest, and identified the suffix -es-, 
with secondary thematic inflexion, in Lat. emero (also emerem), 
Gk. eSovfuu, 6avovp,aL and futures of the type (/>ava). He 
thus claims an Indo-European future in -es- opposed to a 
subjunctive in -so-. It would be the oldest form, of which the 
-sip- of Indo-Iranian and Baltic would be an extension. This 
depends upon his denial that Oscan pertemest, Umbrian ferest 
have lost the thematic vowel by syncope. He suggests that 
the non-thematic sg. 3 in Irish may be a survival of this 
ancient future. Schwyzer rejects his explanation of the Greek 
forms, op. cit. 784, preferring that of Schulze (Kl. Schr. 107). 
So also Leumann for the Latin forms, Lat. Gr. 326 ; and it 
does not appear that the evidence is sufficient to sustain the 
supposed future in -es-. It must be admitted that the vowel 
before -s- in ferest, pertemest remains unexplained. It may 
have the same origin as the -e- in /crevew, crreAecu, (<f>av0)), 
itself obscure, which Schulze showed to be of Indo-European 
date. 1 

On the other hand, Pedersen does not discuss the common 
type 8ei a>. Would he admit that here at least an old sub- 
junctive has become a future as in Latin ero ? Pedersen himself 
concludes : * Les rapports du futur indo-europeen avec 
1'aoriste sigmatique sont done plus etroits qu'on ne le soup- 
9onnait jusqu'ici. Tous les deux temps sont formes au moyen 
d'un meme suffixe, et 1'hypothese qu'ils ont ete des 1'origine 

1 Professor Sturtevant calls my attention to the s-suffix in Hittite 
which forms presents of verbs in -mi and preterites of verbs in -hi. Here the 
form -es- appears, beside -as-, in both present (sg. 3 ga-ne-es-zi beside 
da-ma-as-zi) and preterite (pi. 1 ta-me-es'-s'u-en beside 3 ta-ma-as-sir), s. 
Hitt. Gr. 318, 319, 461. The origin of the e is uncertain. It could be 
interpreted as the reduced grade of -e, final of a disyllabic root, as in Gk. 
yeve-rtDp, and the suffix would be -s-, but it looks as though there may be 
some connection with the ' extension of certain roots before the s of the 
future and desiderative ', which Schulze regarded as proto-Indo-European 
(loc. cit. 105), that is to say, with the alternation -es-/-s-, which Pedersen 
sought to explain. But in Hittite -es- is common to present and preterite 


tout simplement le temps non passe et le temps passe d'un 
verbe perfectif, est devenu plus vraisemblable que jamais. 
Mais il faut se rappeler neanmoins qu'ils sont devenus 
autonomes et independants Fun de 1'autre avant la fin de la 
periode indo-europeenne.' 1 

This theory is reaffirmed by Pedersen in his ' Studes 
Lituaniennes ', 2 where it is maintained, against Leskien, 3 
that the fut. sg. 3 in Lithuanian is non- thematic. Here, 
however, the suffix appears as -s-, not -es-, just as in Irish. The 
difference between his doctrine and that of Brugmann is 
stated as follows : * Si le futur indo-europeen a ete un theme 
en -s-, nous entrevoyons un etat de choses ou le futur etait 
tout simplement le temps actuel et general d'un verbe 
perfectif dont le temps passe a fourni 1'aoriste en -s-. Le 
rapport du futur et de 1'aoriste en -s- etait done le meme que 
le rapport du present et de I'imparfait (temps actuel-general et 
temps passe d'un verbe imperfectif).... Mais ce rapport entre 
le futur et 1'aoriste en -s- est prehistorique. Dans les langues 
indo-europeennes les plus anciennes (le grec et le Sanskrit), 
le futur est la designation expresse du temps a venir et peut 
etre imperfectif.... C'est la une maniere de voir qui differe du 
tout au tout des theories de Brugmann, Grundriss 2 II 3, 383 ss., 
407 ; car on entrevoit aisement que Brugmann n'attribue 
au futur qu'un age moins ancien, en y voyant un developpe- 
ment secondaire dont Tune des sources etait 1'aoriste. 4 

This is not the sense that I get from Brugmann, and it is 
not in this sense that I venture to prefer his view to that of 
Pedersen. It seems to me that the occurrence of non-thematic 
aorists in -s- beside stems in -so- which are both future and 
subjunctive in the historic period (Sanskrit, Greek, 5 Irish), 
with a shift of the subjunctive stem to -se-, -so- in Greek, 
as the future and potential uses became differentiated, implies 

1 op. cit. 25. 

2 Ibid. Hist-fil. Medd. XIX 3. 

3 Litauisches Lesebuch 199 ; but Brugmann explains the form as a non- 
thematic injunctive, op. cit. 2 II 3, 384. 

4 Ibid. pp. 3-4. 

5 a. Hopkins, AJP 13, 20. 


a primitive state of the language when these two functions 
were served by the same form. 1 The non- thematic sg. 3 forms 
in Lithuanian, Irish, and Sabellic ( ? ) may indeed be survivals 
of present-aorist indicative forms with future meaning. In 
Lithuanian, as in Irish, the thematic forms of sg. 2 and 3 
would have fallen together. 

Those Irish verbs which have preserved one set of forms for 
the two functions, even when they had become grammatically 
distinct, have merely adhered to the old system. 


The ^-preterite in Old Irish 

[The s-preterite has its origin in roots ending in -s, which 
yielded an aorist suffix -ss- not liable to disappear between 
vowels. The root *q"es- (or *q~eis-) ' to see ' was one of these, 
and s-forms of O.I. ci- are not to be regarded as late formations. 
The reduplicated s-aorist may be an old Indo-European form.] 

There are three ways of forming the preterite in Irish, of 
which two are confined to strong verbs, and one is 
characteristic of weak inflexion. The strong formations are 
the ^-preterite, which perhaps contains an Indo-European 
1 terminative ' suffix -to, 2 and the suffixless preterite which 
derives from the Indo-European perfect. The third is the 
s-preterite, which, with the /-future, is proper to weak verbs 
in -a and -i (cf. Lat. lauddre, finire). In discussing this forma- 
tion the authorities are agreed on two points : (1) that it 
derives in some way from the Indo-European s-aorist, and 
(2) that the preservation of intervocalic -s- is due, as in Greek, 
to the influence of consonantal stems, whose consonant would 
protect the suffix. Thurneysen, indeed, does not say quite 

1 Renou regards the thematic vowel as originally marking an ' eventual ' 
form which appears sometimes as indicative, sometimes as modal. The 
thematic indicative and short vowel subjunctive would then be identical 
in origin, s. BSL 33, 5. 

2 s. A. Sommerfelt, Symbolae Grammaticae in hon. J. Rozwadowski, 255. 
The explanation proposed by Thurneysen (KZ 37, 118), that the t was 
originally the sg. 3 ending of a root aorist is preferred by Pedersen, CCG 300. 


so much, but confines himself to suggesting a comparison with 
Gk. eSajuacrcra. 1 Pedersen is more positive : ' Die abgeleiteten 
Verba auf -a-, -e-, -1- besassen in urindogermanischer Zeit 
wohl keinen -s-Aorist ; nach dem Muster der primitiven 
Verba haben sie jedoch im Slavischen und im Griechischen 
einen solchen Aorist neugebildet : gr. e-rt/z^cra, e-^i'A^tja 
slav. delaxu ' ich machte ', velexu l befahl ', xvalixu ' lobte '. 
So auch im Keltischen. Das -s- musste in diesen Neubildungen 
im Keltischen (wie im Griechischen), soweit es inter vokalisch 
war, lautgesetzlich zu -h- werden ; es ist aber nach dem Muster 
derjenigen (einst vorhandenen) Aoriste, in denen das 
aoristische -s- unmittelbar an den wurzelauslautenden Kon- 
sonanten getreten war, analogisch als -s- restituiert worden. 
Die Restitution hat jedenfalls in einer sehr alten Zeit stattge- 
funden, wo noch das -k-s- und -t-s- der Aoriste der primitiven 
Verba mit wurzelauslautendem Hinterlingual oder Dental 
sowohl im Ir. wie im Brit, unassimiliert erhalten war.' 2 

But it is also observed that traces of the original formation, 
in which the suffix was added directly to the root, do survive 
in Irish : ad-glddathar l speaks to, addresses ' : pret. sg. 3 
prototonic, with infixed ro, -drlastar (*dd-ro-gldd-s-tro) ; 
pi. 1 ad-glaasmar, wrongly explained as subjunctive by 
Thurneysen, Hdb. 594 ; but deuterotonic sg. 3 ad-glddastar, 
with a borrowed vowel before the -s- ; saidid ' sits ' : pret. 
sg. 3 absolute and conjunct seiss (beside siasair which shows 
reduplication of the s-stem, and inflexion as a deponent 
suffixless preterite) ; ar-neut ' I wait ' : pret. sg. 3 deponent, 
with infixed ro, ar-ru-neastar. Bergin has proved that the 
stem neih- is a compound *ni-sed-, so that this form merely 
confirms the evidence for the root *sed-. for -der et ' traverses, 
surveys' : pret. sg. 1 deponent for-derisiur (*for-de-ret-s-or). 9 
To these must be added certain forms of ad-ci * sees ', the root 
of which is known to have ended in s (pret. pass, ad-cess), 

1 Hdb. 671. 

2 VKG II, p. 376. 

3 VKG II, p. 388, Anm. 6. The simple rethid ' runs ' and all other com- 
pounds has a suffixless pret. rdith, but subjunctive and future are always 


and was probably *q^es- (Skr. caksate). This verb forms its 
preterite most often by reduplication : -accae < *ad-q-eq-ose, 
that is to say by the use of the old perfect ; but a few s- 
preterites occur, two of them in the Milan glosses : pi. 3 
niru rescesset, 34cll ; niru frescisset, 72cl3, and the others, 
sg. 3 tincais, pi. 3 tincsetar, as preterite of a compound *to-in- 
ad-ci- ' attends to ' in a twelfth century ms. where the verb 
seems to have been reformed upon a weak stem tine-. 1 Since 
the s-aorist is closely akin to the s-future in Indo-European, 2 
it is not irrelevant to point out that ci-, while forming sub- 
junctive and future regularly in -a-, has s-forms in the passive : 
-accastar (beside ad-cither), fut. at-chichestdr, and a pi. 3 
active at-chichset occurs in a tenth century poem, firm 3, 
30. 10, 3 beside -aiccichet elsewhere. 

This verb then supplies the model required for the s- 
preterite of vocalic stems, a root ending in -s, which dis- 
appeared except when immediately followed by a consonant, 
so that the aorist stem appeared to have -ss- added to the 
preceding vowel. There were, no doubt, many other such roots, 
and the reduplicated sg. 3 bebais ' died ' (root *6as-) may not 
be due to analogy as Thurneysen supposed (ZCP 13, 104). 

Why is it that almost all strong verbs avoid the s-preterite 
in Old Irish ? We have seen that four strong verbs, ci-, glad-, 
reth-, sed-, having preterite forms in -s-, have the suffix added 
directly to the root. Of these only glad- has the s-preterite 
alone, while the others have also the suffixless formation ; and 
ci-, reth-, sed- form the subjunctive and future in -s-, while 
glad- has only the a-subjunctive. The s-forms of ci- are 
rare. Only two early examples of the preterite are attested, 
and in the subjunctive and future a-forms are normal ; but 

1 VKG p. 488 ; Lewis and Pedersen, Concise Celtic Grammar, p. 352. 
I leave out of account ar-ru-muinset, Ml. 90al, formed from the present 
stem, beside -menatar and ndd arroimsat, Wb. 26a23 beside ar-roet, s. 
Thurneysen, Hdb. 670. 

2 Pedersen suggests that the future was originally the non-preterite form, 
the aorist indicative the preterite, of the s-stem, Formes sigmatiques, 3. 

3 Thurneysen supposes that it is a late form, Ind. Anz. 33, 33, but the 
s-future was scarcely a spreading type in the later Old Irish period. 



Thurneysen observed of the pres. subj. sg. pass, -accastar 
that it is probably the older formation (Hdb. 607), and future 
s-forms have been cited above. Only a single preterite in -s- 
from reth- is attested, the simple verb and all other compounds 
having the suffixless rdith, but subjunctive and future are 
always in -s-. sed- is not well attested in the preterite. Vedic 
has a perfect sasdda, pi. 3 sedur (cf. Latin sedi, Gothic sat, 
setum). An Irish suffixless pret. sg. 1 -siad, 2 -smd, 3 -s'iaid, 
pi. 1 -semmar, 2 -smid, 3 -setar would be possible, and this 
paradigm survives in the perfective preterite sg. 3 du-essid, 
-dessid, pi. 3 do-esetar (TBC 2 3164), with the preverbs *di-en- 1 . 
The simple pret. sg. 3 occurs once in Old Irish as siasair (Thes. 
Pal. II 327, 13) and a sg. 1 sessar in a Middle Irish text (Aisl. 
MCG. 93.2) ; pi. 3 rel. siasatdr (LU 5299) can be old. In one 
text in the Book of Leinster the sg. 3 occurs four times as 
seiss, -seiss (RC 14, 447). The text is Middle Irish in its present 
form, and Pedersen regards the examples as due to confusion 
with the future, 2 but they have been held by Zimmer and 
Thurneysen to be genuine early forms. 3 The subjunctive and 
future of sed- are always in -s- : subj. sg. 2 -seiss and fut. sg. 3 
seiss occur. 

The condition of the verb ci- is instructive. Here we find 
s-forms in subjunctive, future, and preterite, but always as 
alternative, and apparently in process of disappearance. 
Since in Irish the inflexion of subjunctive and preterite in -s- 
fell together through the spread of the thematic stem to the 
old aorist indicative (and the intrusion of a few non-thematic 
forms into the subjunctive), and since aorist and perfect had 
merged, as in Latin, in a common preterite tense, it was 
natural that verbs having an s-subjunctive should adopt the 
old perfect as preterite. Verbs having the a-subjunctive 
might adopt either perfect or aorist. Glad-, with the sub- 
junctive and future in -a-, and the preterite in -s- presents the 

1 cf. laigid ' lies ' ; perfective pret. sg. 3 dellig, -dellechuir, pi. 3 dellgetar. 
A simple pret. *leiss or *liliss might be expected, but no such form has yet 
been found. 

8 VKG II, 604. 

3 KZ 30, 151 ; 31, 97. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. E 


type of differentiation that spread ; and it is to this type that 
the weak verbs, all of which have the a-subj unctive, owe their 
s-preterite. This is confirmed by the fact that of the strong 
verbs in Pedersen's index other than the four mentioned, all 
that have the s-preterite have the a-subj unctive, while the 
great majority have the s-subjunctive and the suffixless 
preterite. 1 

In this connection it is worth observing that of fourteen 
strong verbs taking an s-preterite (ba-, car-, gaib-, gat-, glad-, 
gni-, ib-, neth-, rd-, sed-, sel-, sni-, ta-, tuil-) six show reduplica- 
tion : ba-, bebais ; gni, -genus (pi. 3 gnisit, without reduplica- 
tion, RC 12, 58.7) ; rd-, rerais ; sed-, siasair (seiss, v. sup.) ; 
sel-, siblais ; sni-, -seni ; ta-, -tadus. It has been held that this 
cannot be a formation of Indo-European date, 2 but reduplica- 
tion of the s-future is normal (adding presumably intensive 
or desiderative force), and reduplication of asigmatic aorist 
stems is well established in Vedic and Greek, so that a redupli- 

1 (a) s-subj. and suffixless pret. : arc-, bond-, cerd-, cing-, clad-, click-, 
ding-, dlong-, fed-, fiad-, fich-, jinn-, glenn-, grenn-, guid-, ice-, ith-, laig-, 
lig-, ling-, long- ' to eat ', long- ' to sustain ', maid-, mid-, mlig-, nasc-, nig-, 
od-, reg- ' to bind ', reth- (except pret. sg. 1 -derisiur, v. sup.), rond-, scuich-, 
senn-, seth-, slig-, tech-, long-, trace-. 

(b) a-subj. and s-pret. : car-, gaib-, gat-, glad- (v. sup.) gni-, ib-, rd-, sel-, 
sni-, ta-, tuil-. 

(c) a-subj. and suffixless pret. : ben-, can-, cluin-, cren-, dam-, er-, fen- 
(pret. for-chui, VKG ii 444), fo- gain-, glen-, gnin-, gon-, gu-, laim-, len- ' to 
follow ', muin-, ren-, riad- (pret. not well attested), scend-, snig-, tlen-. 

(d) mixed or doubtful inflexion : ba- : a-subj. (a- and s-fut.), suffixless 
and s-pret. ; bong- : s-subj., suffixless and J-pret. ; ci- : a- and s-subj., 
suffixless and s-pret. ; cid- : s-subj., no pret. attested ; cuir- : a-subj., 
no pret. (supple tive) ; da- : no subj. attested, s-pret. ; den- : no subj. 
attested, suffixless pret. (KZ 37, 112); dlig- : s-subj., t- and -pret. ; 
neth- : a- and s-subj. (s-fut.), s-pret. ; reg- ' to stretch ' : 5-subj., t- and 
euffixless pret. ; sed- : s-subj., suffixless and s-pret. ; slaid- : 5-subj. 
(late 5-pret.) ; snad- : s-subj., no pret. attested ; ta- : a- and s-subj. 
(s-fut.), s-pret. ; tend- : no subj. attested, suffixless pret. ; tiag- : s-subj., 
no pret. (suppletive) ; tuit- : s-subj., no pret. (suppletive). 

(e) It will be well to complete this synopsis with a list of the verbs which 
form a <-pret. (s. A. Sommerfelt, loc. cit.) : (a) a-subj. : ag-, al- y ball-, her-, 
eel-, dar- (subj. not attested), em-, gair-, gel-, ger-, mar-, mel-, sem-, sern-, 
/J) s-subj. : aneg-, mag-, org-, reg- ' to stretch ', saig-. 

8 s. Zimmer, KZ 30, 123 ; Thurneysen, ib. 31, 62. 


cated s-aorist is not in itself monstrous. The form indeed 
is present in Greek : \iiyav S' eAeAtfev "OXvp,7rov, II. 
1, 530, where, however, the reduplication is specially 
' affective ', and the present stem is also attested with 
reduplication in a few examples (eAeAi^djuevos-, e'AeAt^ero). 1 
The reduplicating vowel could be i or e in all the Irish examples 
except -tadus where the root vowel is reduplicated. Pokorny 
has shown that the suffixless pret. of i-roots had i in the 
reduplication, 2 so that i is here too perhaps acceptable, but 
e-roots would have had e in the reduplication, and e may 
equally well have become generalized. 

Thurneysen classified the formation, without discussing its 
origin, as proper to verbs whose roots ended in a long vowel, 
and accordingly withdrew an earlier objection to the deriva- 
tion of ta- from IE. *sthd-. 3 Siasair is explained as an old 
perfect, influenced by -sissedar, bebais as analogical, and 
siblais is not discussed. The evidence for an s-preterite of 
sed- has been considered above ; bebais could be analogical, 
but the analogy is not clear, and the form is old, and is con- 
firmed by the pi. 3 bebsait ' they died ' in a very early poem, 
Alt. Ir. Dicht. II, 7. I would claim it, with ci- (and perhaps 
ta- ?) as one of the sources of the Irish s-preterite, since the 
root probably ended in -s 4 ; siblais is explained by Pedersen 
as an old sufnxless pret. which has taken the ending of an s- 
pret. and the reduplicating vowel of the future. 5 but in the 
presence of so many other reduplicated s-preterites this is 
perhaps unnecessary. The difficulty is rather in the non- 
palatal -bl-, with i in the preceding syllable : siblais, not 

1 Beside pcppr/pige, ncp^pi^a) is also well attested : 7Top<f>vpw occurs 
only in pres. and imperf. Professor Bonfante calls my attention to the fact 
that cAcAt'^co is attested in Homer only in the aorist (15 times), s. A. 
Gehring, Index Homericus. 

8 ZCP 11, 25 ; IF 35, 336 ; Thuraeysen, ZCP 13, 101. 

3 ZCP 13, 104. His objection was based upon the past subj. pass. sg. 
-etaste, which suggests a root ending in -s, Ind. Anz. 33, 36. Also pret. pass 
sg. -etas, LU 7256, cf. IT 144.7 ; 120.21 ; fut. -etastar, Bethu Phatraic 1362. 

4 Thurneysen, Hdb. 701 ; Ind. Anz. 33, 33. so- ' to turn ', which forms 
the s-pret., may also be from a root ending in -s, s. ibid. 36. 

6 VKG II, 623. 


*siblis ; and it must be due to the influence of the future 
-siblur, a form itself not easy to explain. 

There seems to be no sufficient reason to regard the 
formation as confined to roots ending in a long vowel, particu- 
larly since no occasion has been suggested for the development 
in these roots beyond others. Those who cannot accept the 
notion of a reduplicated s-aorist as inherited from Indo- 
European may prefer to hold that the Irish s-forms have 
arisen under the influence of the s-future. Here the redupli- 
cating vowel is i, subject to umlaut if the root contained a or 
o : memais, nenais, selais. When the s-subjunctive (and 
future) and the s-preterite became mutually exclusive forms, 
verbs which retained the one abandoning the other, since the 
future presented simple forms with and without reduplication, 
and the reduplication was often lost by syncope in the com- 
pound verbs, which are the great majority, it would be easy 
for reduplicated preterites to arise. In fact bebais, which is 
pret. at Fel. Prol. 95, Feb. 18, April 23, occurs as future 
' will die ', ZCP 12, 237.11 (but fut. pi. 3 rel. bebte, Wb. 25bl6). 

Finally a word about the s-aorist in derived verbs. Pedersen 
supposes that it is not of I-E. date, and so does Brugmann, 
Grundriss 2 II 3, 206. In Vedic the forms are rare, 1 but less 
than half the roots occurring in the Rig- Veda show any 
aorist forms, 2 an indication of the fragmentary state of the 
evidence. In Greek, on the other hand, the type appears as an 
old one, for the homeric forms with intervocalic -aa- 
(e'Sajuacrcja,) are explained by analogy with such forms as 
eVe'Aeo-cra which is a derived verb. For Latin Bonfante has 
shown, I think, that cantdro, cantdram, cantdrim, cantdsse, 
are best explained as formed from an aorist stem *cantds-* 

There is another approach to the question. For the aorist 
there were briefly three possibilities. Either the root was itself 
aorist in meaning, and personal endings were added without 
more ado, the question being then that of forming a durative 

1 Whitney, Sanskrit Grammar 1068. 

2 ib. 827. 

3 Language 17, 209. 


or inceptive or other non-aorist (present) stem ; or the root 
was subject to vowel gradation as between present and aorist, 
in terms of Sanskrit grammar, it belonged to both the first 
and sixth classes (bhdvati and tuddti) ; or the root, not 
aorist in itself, could be given the aorist aspect by means of 
a suffix s. 1 From the evidence of Skr. adiat : Gk. e'Seifa we 
conclude that a root *deiR- was capable of both inflexions, 
and we assume that there was originally, perhaps in a pre- 
Indo-European period, a difference of meaning between 
*diJceti, *ediKet, and *deittsti, *edei7cst. But this difference had 
disappeared within the Indo-European period, and the suffix 
s had become a mark of the aorist. Now the formation of 
verbs from nouns by means of a suffix -io- is also of I.-E. date. 
Is it reasonable to suppose that these verbs could have no 
aorist ? It would be odd if none such were formed as were 
capable of the aorist aspect. And the suffix s was at hand, 
to which the aorist value had clearly attached itself. 2 Unless 
the Indo-Europeans behaved, in matters linguistic, very 
differently from their grandchildren, these verbs must have 
had the s-aorist. 

This a priori reasoning is not the fashion in comparative 
grammar, and it is obviously open to objection. I do not 
press it, but venture to say this much merely to test an 
authoritative opinion which I cannot share. 

1 I leave out of account the features of vowel gradation which present 
themselves in the Sanskrit s-aorist. 

2 Meillet has pointed out that all Greek verbs with present in io have the 
5-aorist (' Sur 1'aoriste sigtnatique,' Mel. De Saussure 93). However, he 
too regards the formation as secondary (ib. 85 f., 94). His opinion that the 
element s was not a suffix but a mere enlargement of the root conflicts with 
Pedersen's doctrine. 

(This article has benefited by the criticism of Professor Sturtevant and of 
Professor Bonfante. They are, however, not responsible for the views 



THE object of this article is to illustrate my own speech 
habits in the palatalization or non-palatalization of a con- 
sonant in juxtaposition with a following palatalized one. 
In conformity with the law of regressive assimilation in 
Russian 2 a consonant preceding a palatalized one is generally 
palatalized. In some definite instances, however, this 
palatalization does not occur in my speech and in that of a 
great number of other speakers. 

There are many cases in which the palatalization of the 
first consonant is not very distinctly heard, e.g. the palatalized 
s' or z' in words like s'n'Eg (snow), s'l'iva (plum), z'd'fijn'ij 
(local). 3 The existence of palatalization may, however, be 
effectively tested in words in which e in a stressed syllable is 
followed by two consonants the second of which is palatalized : 
if the vowel before the two consonants is the close variety of 
the e-phoneme (phonetic symbol e), then the consonant is 
soft or palatalized, since the close variety of e occurs only 
before soft consonants. Examples: p'es'n'a (not p'esn'a) 
(song), vozm'ez'd'ije (not vozm'Ezd'ije) (retribution), and 
compare kr'es'Pe (armchair (prep, sing.) ) with kr'sslo, 
kr'Eslu, etc. (other cases). 

If on the other hand the vowel before the two consonants 
is the open variety of the e-phoneme (phonetic symbol ), 
then the consonant is hard or non-palatalized, since the open 
variety occurs only before hard consonants. Example: 
z'Eml'i (lands). 

1 The subject of this article was suggested to me by Professor N. B. 
Jopson, of Cambridge, and I thank him for the suggestion. 

2 See S. Boyanus, A Manual of Russian Pronunciation, p. 89, 122 ff. 
(Sidgwick and Jackson, London). 

8 The system employed in this article for writing Russian words is a 
transliteration, except for the phonetic symbols e and which distinguish 
close and open varieties of e and also J (sh), 5 (zh), tj (tch). 


Most of the following examples illustrate the above method 
of demonstration. But a few cases of other types are included, 
where the palatalized consonant is clearly heard or when 
there is no suitable example with e for illustration. 

1. p, b, m, k, g, x followed by soft consonant 

The bi-labials p, b, m, the velar plosives k, g, and the velar 
fricative x are not palatalized in juxtaposition with a following 
soft consonant. 

Examples of p, b, m 





bl 3 





1'spt'e (dat. and prep. sing, of 1'spta, mite), skept'ik 


v'ePikol'spn'ej (comp. of v'el'ikol'Epnyj, magnificent). 
p'spl'e (prep. sing, of p'ep'el, cinders), t'spl'itsa (it 

burns, shines faintly). 

sk'sps'is (scepsis), r'sps'e (prep, of r'eps, rep). 
v'spr'e (prep. sing, of v'spr', wild boar). 
kr'fiptfe (comp. of kr'pk'ij 9 strong, solid). 
J't/Epk'i (chips, splinters), kr'spk'i (pi. predic. form of 

kr'fipk'ij, strong, solid). 
ut/Ebn'ik (text-book), vrasd'Ebn'ej (comp. of 

vrasd'Ebnyj, hostile). 
s't'Ebl'i (stalks), kol'sbl'et (3rd pers. sing. pres. of 

kol'ebat', to shake, agitate). 

s'er'sbr'ennyj (adj., silver), d'sbr'i (jungle, thicket). 
tjfim n'e molod'ets ? (What is lacking in smartness, 

good health, etc., in me ?) dialectal r'smn'i (usually 

r'emn'i straps). 
z'Eml'i (lands), vn'fiml'et (3rd pers. sing, of vn'at', to 

listen, hear). 
z'Ems't'v'e (prep, of z'Emstvo, rural self-government 

in pre-revolutionary Russia). 
p'smz'e (dat. and prep, of p'smza, pumice-stone). 
n'smtjik (dim. of n'emets, a German), semtjug (pearl). 
t'ur'EmJtfik l (gaoler). 

n'smk'i (German women). 

1 J in juxtaposition with following tj is always soft ; v'ej'tj (thing), 
'VeJ'tJetVer't'i (a quarter to). 


When, however, a bi-labial is in juxtaposition with a 
following soft bi-labial it is palatalized, e.g. t'em'p'e (prep, of 
t'fimp, tempo), zar'em'b'e (dat. and prep, of zar'smba, a 

Examples of k, g, x 

kt' : s'fikt'e (dat. and prep. sing, of s'fikta, sect), pr'ei'skt'e 

(prep. sing, of pr'efskt, prefect), korr'fikt'n'ej (comp. 

of korr'sktnyj, proper, correct). 
kl' s'skl'i (they whipped, flogged), p'skl'e (prep. sing, of 

p'eklo, scorching heat). 
ks' b'sks't'v'e (prep. sing, of b'skstvo, hasty retreat), 

t'sks't'ik (small text), v'sks'eP (promissory note). 
ktj n'sktjemu (no good). 
gm' flEgm'e (dat. and prep. sing, of fl'sgma, phlegm, 

phlegmatic person). 
gd' n'Egd'e (nowhere). 
gr' n'figr'e (prep, of n'figr, negro). 
xn' t'fixn'ika (technics, technique). 
xtj I'sxtje (easier). 

It is noteworthy that the consonants p, b, m, which are 
articulated at the entrance of the mouth and k, g, x at the 
back of it, i.e. in the two extreme parts of the speech apparatus, 
are not affected by a following soft consonant. 

2. Consonant followed by palatalized k, g, x 
When a consonant precedes palatalized k, g, or x, there is 
no palatalization. 



nk ! 


v'stk'i (branches), d'fitk'i (children), r'fitk'i (pi. short 

ending form of adj. r'fitk'ij, rare). 
koPfink'i (knees), s't'fink'i (gen. sing, and nom. and ace. 

pi. of dim. s't'snka, little wall). 
m'firk'i (measures), prov'firk'i (verifications). 
stam'Esk'i (chisels), 1'Esk'i (fishing-lines), pr'iv'ssk'i 

rozg'i (birch-rods). 
v'fitx'i (pi. short ending form of adj. v'fitx'ij, ancient). 


3. f, v followed by soft consonants 

The labio-dentals f, v might be dealt with together with the 
bi-labials, since they behave in the same way, but they seem 
to be less stable, and vacillations are noticeable in my speech 
and in that of many speakers of my type of Russian. 


ft' n'fift'i (gen. sing, of n'eft' petroleum, oil), 
fs' d'Efs'tVmnitsa (virgin). 
ft/ p'sftfij (chorister, choir-boy). 
fjtj pos'Efftjik (sower). 

fk' d'fifk'i (gen. sing, and nom. pi. of d'fifka, girl). 
vn' dr'Evn'ij (ancient, antique), kotffivn'ik (nomad), tsar'Evn'e 

(dat. and prep. sing, of tsar'svna, daughter of the 

czar), d'er'Evn'a (village). 
vP : d'e/Evl'e (cheaper), izdr'svl'e (of yore). 
vz' : n'Ejz'il (didn't take). 

Note. The vacillation in my speech affects the word 
d'er'Evn'a. I always pronounce d'er'ev'n'a, v d'er'ev'n'e, 
v d'er'ev'n'u. Some speakers say d'ef'k'i for d'Efk'i (see fk'). 

4. Consonant followed by palatalized p, b, m, f, v 

Usage varies when a consonant precedes a palatalized 
bi-labial or labio-dental consonant. 


t'm'/tm' t'm'in and tm'in (cummin). 
d'm/dm' d'm'itr'ij and dm'itr'ij (Demetrius (name)). 
n'f'/nf kan'f'Ety and kanf'sty (sweetmeats). 
n'v'/nv' kan'v'firt and kanv'srt (envelope). 
t'v'/tv' t'v'er' and tv'er' (name of a town). 
d'v'/dv' d'v'er' and dv'er' (door). 


z'v' r'ez'v'itsa (he, she frisks), b'ezVes't'i (with no 

knowledge of anybody), Pez'v'ije (blade of 
knife, etc.). 

Note. I say t'm'in, d'm'itr'ij, t'v'er', d'v'er', but kanf 'ety, 
kanv'ert (not kan'f 'ety, kan'v'ert). 


5. Palatalized consonants preceded by t', d', n', s', z', J' 

Palatalized t', d', n', s', z', J are used before all palatalized 
consonants. Hard t, d, n, s, z, J, never occur in this position. 




spl'et'n'a (gossip), Pet'n'ij (adj., summer), kar'et'n'ik 

(coach-maker), zam'et'n'ej (more noticeable). 
p'et'l'a (loop). 
nas'Pet's't'v'e (prep, of nas'l'ststvo, inheritance), 

b'et's't'v'ije (calamity), pr'iv'et's't'v'ije (greeting). 

d'stss't'v'e, prep. sing, of d'stsstvo (childhood), 

because the speaker pronounces an independent 

ts which is hard and adds to it the ending -s't'v'e. 
gaz'et'tjik (newspaper man), razv'et'tjik (scout, 

feeler), oprom'et'tjivyj (rash, precipitate). 
m'ed'n'ik (tinker), nas'Ped'n'ik (heir), pos'Ped'n'ij 

m'ed'l'it (he, she lingers, delays), 'ned'PatJivo (for 

no purpose). 
m'en't'ik (hussar's pelisse), p'en't'ux (lubber, lout), 

protsen't'e (prep. sing, of protsent, percentage). 
Peg'en'd'e (dat. and prep. sing, of Peg'snda, legend), 

kr'en'd'el' (a kind of bun). 
p'en's'ija (pension), blagod'en's'tVije (bliss, pros- 

perity), sen's'tVinnyj (womanly), duxov'en's't'v'e 

(prep. sing, of duxov'enstvo, clergy). 
pr'et'en'z'ija (claim, grievance), ven'z'eP (mono- 

gram, initials). 
mlad'en'tjik (dim. of mlad'en'ets, baby), v'en'tjik 

(halo), izm'en'tfivyj (variable, inconsistent), 

zas't'en'tfivyj (shy). 
n'J'tJ : sen'j'tjina (woman), otsen'j'tjik (valuer), izm'en'J'tfik 


s't' : m'es't'e (prep. sing, of m'ssto, place), d'v'es't'i (200). 
s'n' : p'es'n'a (song), v'es'n'ik (herald, messenger), Pes'n'itsa 

(staircase), [t not pronounced in v'es't'n'ik and 









Pes't'n'itsa] in't'er'es'n'ej (comp. of in't'er'esnyj, 


s'P : jes'Pi (if), kr'es'l'e (prep. sing, of kr'sslo, armchair). 
z'd' : jez'd'it (he, she goes (not on foot)), vozm'ez'd'ije 

(retribution), sozv'ez'd'ije (constellation). ' 
z'n' : b'ez'n'e (dat. and prep. sing, of b'szna, chasm, abyss), 

najez'n'ik (rider, horseman), pol'ez'n'ej (comp. of 

pol'sznyj, useful). 
z'P : 1'ez'l'i (they climbed). 
J'tJ : r'ej'tje (comp. of r'szk'ij, cutting, piercing), pom'ejtjik 

(landowner), 'b'SJtfetVer't'i (quarter to). 

Note. In t'n', t'P, t V, t'tj, d'n', dT, t and d are palatalized 
but not exploded. The use of the close variety of e before 
the consonant groups proves that palatalization is present. 

6. r before a palatalized consonant 
(a) Palatalized r. 

Palatalized r' is used before a soft consonant when it 
terminates a stressed syllable containing the vowel i or e, or 
containing vowel a, or u which has a soft consonant or a 
j preceding it. In other cases the r after the stressed syllable 
is non-palatalized. 

Examples with e in stressed syllable 

r'p' : t'er'p'it (he, she bears, endures), v'inotjer'p'ij (cup- 
rV : s'er'b'ija (Serbia), v'er'b'e (dat. and prep. sing, of 

v'srba, pussy-willow), ujtjer'b'e (prep. sing, of 

uftfsrb, detriment, harm). 
r'm' : t'er'm'in (term, expression), f er'm'e (dat. and prep. 

sing, of fa-ma, farm). 
r'f : v'er'f (dockyard). 
rV : p'er'v'enstvo (priority), tfer'v'i (hearts (cards)), 

n'er'v'e (prep. sing, of n'srv, nerve). 
r'f : sm'er'f (death), ser'f (perch, pole), kontser't'e 

(prep. sing, of kontssrt, concert), konv'er't'e (prep. 

sing, of konv'srt, envelope). 


r'd* : ser'd'i (perches, poles), s'er'd'it (he, she makes (me) 

angry), us'er'd'ije (zeal). 
r'n' : t'er'n'ii (thorns), v'et/er'n'a (vespers), Pitsem'er'n'ej 

(comp. of 1'itsem'srnyj, hypocritical), kop'er'n'ik 

(Copernicus), n'eimov'er'n'ej (comp. of neimov'Ernyj, 


r'P : s't'erPad' (sterlet, small sturgeon). 
r's' : p'er's'ija (Persia), s'v'er's'n'ik (person of the same 

age), p'er's'n'i (signet-rings), v'er's'ija (version). 
r'z' : s'v'er'z'ilsa (he fell down, was thrown down). 
r'tj : komm'er'tjisk'ij (commercial), mat'er'tjatyj (made of 

textile fabric), p'er'tjik (dim. of p'er'ets, pepper). 

Examples where stressed syllable has a palatalized consonant 

before a back vowel 
r't' : tjor't'e (prep, of tjort, devil). 
r'n' : d'or'n'i (imp. of d'ornut', to pull, tug). 
r'P : t'or'Pi (past t. pi. of t'er'et', to rub). 

Example where stressed syllable has j before a back vowel 
r'n : jor'n'ik (debauchee). 

(b) Non-palatalized r in stressed syllables 

r is not palatalized when it terminates a stressed syllable 
beginning with a back vowel, or which has a hard consonant 
before the vowel. 


rt' : part'ija (party), port'it' (to spoil, damage). 
rd' : ord'er (order, mandate). 
rn' : parn'a (ace. sing, of par'en', fellow, lad), Jorn'ik (harness 

maker), durn'e (prep. sing, of dur'en', fool). 
rP : marPa (gauze), gorPe (prep. sing, of gorlo, throat). 
rs' : kurs'e (prep. sing, of kurs, course). 

(c) Non-palatalized r in unstressed syllables 

I is not palatalized if the syllable containing the r is 

rt' : vertW (to turn, whirl), vert'Pa'vos't' (fidgetiness). 


rd' : serd'e'tfnos't' (cordiality). 

rv' : s'erv'fs (service, set of dishes, etc.). 

rz' : verz'ila (man as tall as a maypole). 

rn' : zern'istyj (grainy, granular). 

7. Consonant followed by palatalized r' 

When a consonant precedes palatalized r', there is no 
palatalization of that consonant. 

v : vr'em'a (time). 
f : fr'Eska (fresco). 
t : tr'i (three), portr'st (portrait). 

d : 'kgdr'e (prep, of k'fidr, cedar), handr'it' (to be in the blues). 
z : pr'szr'it (3rd pers. sing, future tense of prezr'et', to 
scorn, disdain). 

-^ O 16 CM 





H CO r-H <N 00 


K " 


CO -H 10 CO 

r-H 00 CO 


.| fe 


l-T J"J 

6 I 

O O "* 

CO l-H 

<N O 


P . > 

l-H *~5 

1C r-H 


00 O 

^^ : 



00 00 




s J 





8 -S 



III! 1 

O (M O O 

l> O5 1C CO 

CO -^H 







-i 0) 

1 - 





*O Q} 














DURING the year 1942 the Society held two ordinary meetings 
besides attending a lecture given on 23rd January by M. J. 
Burnay on ' The General Linguistics of M. Gustave Guillaume, 
with particular reference to languages of the Chinese type '. 
At the Anniversary Meeting on 15th May Professor Alf 
Sommerfelt read a paper on ' The position of Linguistics in 
the Post- War World ' and on 1st December Mr. S. E. Mann 
read one on * Some additions to Greek Etymology '. The 
Society is again indebted to the School of Oriental and African 
Studies for its hospitality. 

Transactions 1940 appeared at the end of May, but its 
successor is still in the press ; the greater part of the first 
proofs of Dr. L. R. Palmer's Post-Ptolemaic Papyri has been 

During the year one ordinary member joined and Professor 
Alf Sommerfelt was elected an Honorary Member ; the total 
membership stood at 170, including 9 members in enemy 
or occupied countries. 

The Society sustained heavy losses in the death of its last 
two Presidents, Sir Allen Mawer and Professor R. W. 

A. WOOD WARD } Joint Honorary 
J. R. FIRTH } Secretaries. 

14th May, 1943. 


COUNCIL 1943-1944 


Vice- Presidents 

PROF. F. W. THOMAS, C.I.E., M.A., PH.D., F.B.A. 

PROF. R. A. WILLIAMS, M.A., Pn.D., D.Lrrr. 

C. T. ONIONS, C.B.E., M.A., D.LITT., LiTT.D., LL.D., F.B.A. 




Ordinary Members of Council 




M.A., PH.D. 

J. R. FIRTH, M.A. 




A. MASTER, C.I.E., M.A. 
L. R. PALMER, M.A., PH.D. 
J. A. STEWART, C.I.E., M.C., 

M.A., LL.D. 


Hon. Treasurer 

PROF. R. L. TURNER, M.C., M.A., LiTT.D., F.B.A., Haverbrack, Bishop's 
Stortford, Herts. 

Hon. Secretaries 

PROF. H. W. BAILEY, M.A., D.PHIL., Queens' College, Cambridge. 
(for Publications) 

MISS A. WOODWARD, M.A., Royal Holloway College, Englefield Green, 


MESSRS. BARCLAY & CO., LTD., 1 Pall Mall East, S.W. 1. 

Entrance Fee, 1 Is. ; Subscription, 1 Is. a year (due 1st January), 
or 15 15s. for life. 

Publishers of the Transactions, Messrs. David Nutt (A. G. Berry), 212 
Shaftesbury Avenue, W.C. 2. 

Publishers of the Publications and the Society's Dictionary: Oxford 
University Press, Amen House, Warwick Square, E.G. 4. 


(Corrected to June, 1944} 

%* Members are reminded that it is only by their active assistance that 
the List of Members can be kept up to date. They are earnestly requested 
to call attention to existing errors, and to give timely notification of changes 
of address, titles, and degrees to the Hon. Secretary, Miss A. WOODWARD, 
M.A., Royal Holloway College, Englefield Green, Surrey. 

An asterisk prefixed to a name denotes Life Membership, 
t Awaiting election. 


HUJER, Professor 0., Universita, Praha I, Czechoslovakia. 

PEDERSEN, Professor H., Gersonsvej 69 n , Copenhagen-HL, 

SOMMERFELT, Professor A., Royal Norwegian Ministry of Educa- 
tion, Kingston House, Princes Gate, S.W. 7. 


1940. AQUILINA, Professor Joseph, B.A., LL.D., c/o Royal 
University, Valletta, Malta. 

1929. ATKINSON, B. F. C., M.A., Ph.D., College House, Grange 

Road, Cambridge. 

1931. BAILEY, Professor H. W., M.A., D.Phil., Queens' College, 


1901. BANKS, Mrs. M. M., 19 St. Margaret's Road, Oxford. 
1934. BAZELL, C. E., M.A., Magdalen College, Oxford. 
1944. BECK, A. K., LL.D., 12 Buxton Avenue, Caversham, 

Nr. Reading. 

1930. BERGIN, Professor 0., Ph.D., D.Litt., 10 Grosvenor Place, 

Rathmines, Dublin. 

1934. BERNARD, T. Casimir, B.A., LL.B., 101 East 94th Street, 

New York City, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1935. BLACKMAN, Mrs. E., M.A., Uppercross, Storey's Way, 


1934. BOSTOCK, J. Knight, M.A., B.Litt., Ph.D., 5 St. Margaret's 

Road, Oxford. 

1926. BRAUNHOLTZ, Professor G. E. K., M.A., 78 Old Road, 
Headington, Oxford. 

1936. BROOKS, K. R., M.A., D.Phil., Merton College, Oxford. 
1944. BRYANT, Professor Margaret M., Ph.D., Dept. of English, 

Brooklyn College, Brooklyn, New York, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1932. BRYSON, J. N., M.A., 94 High Street, Oxford. 

1935. BURROW, T., M.A., Ph.D., Dept. of Oriental Printed 

Books and MSS., British Museum, W.C. 1. 

1936. BUTLIN, R. T., B.A., c/o The British Council, Cairo, Egypt. 

1932. CAMPBELL, A., B.A., B.Litt., 11 Marston Ferry Road, 

1943. CAMPBELL, I. M., M.A., Balliol College, Oxford. 


1936. CAWLEY, A. C., B.A., Lowell House, G-22, 50 Holyoke 

Street, Cambridge, Mass., U.S.A. 
1920. CHATTERJI, S. K., M.A., D.Lit., 16 Hindusthani Park, 

P.O. Baliganj, Calcutta, India. 
1928. CHOTZEN, T. M., Litt.D., 4 Meloenstr., The Hague, 


1923. COLLINSON, Professor W. E., M.A., Ph.D., 58 Alderley 

Eoad, Hoylake, Wirral, Cheshire. 

1902. CRAIGIE, Professor Sir William A., M.A., LL.D., D.Litt., 
Eidgehurst, Christmas Common, Watlington, Oxon. 

1939. CREWS, Mrs. M. G., M.A., Ph.D., Girton College, Cam- 

1935. DAHL, Professor Torsten, Universitetsparken, Aarhus, 

1934. D'ARDENNE, Miss S., B.Litt., 57 rue J.-B. Colyns XL, 

Brussels, Belgium. 
1934. DAUNT, Miss M., M.A., 73a Elsham Eoad, Kensington, 


1939. *DAVIES, H. Lloyd, Dinnle, Gardden, Ruabon near 


1924. DAWKINS, Professor E. M., M.A., Exeter College, Oxford. 
1913. *DAY, Miss M., M.A., D.Lit., 15 Elgin Court, Maida Hill, 

W. 9. 
1934. DICKINS, Professor Bruce, M.A., The University, Leeds 2. 

1932. *DILLON, Professor M., M.A., Ph.D., Wisconsin University, 

Madison, U.S.A. ' 

1938. DUNN, C. W., C.I.E., M.A., Manting House, Meldreth, 

1937. EARLS-JENKINS, E., M.A., D.Ed., F.I.L., 89 Lexham 

Gardens, Kensington, W. 8. 

1938. EDWARDS, Professor Evangeline D., D.Lit., School of 

Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 

1933. EDWARDS, Professor W. M., B.A., The University, 

Leeds 2. 
fELLiOTT, F. S., 7 Shaw Lane, Tettenhall Wood, Nr. 

Wolverhampton, Staffs. 

1938. ELSTON, C. S., M.A., Ph.D., Woodlands, High Molewood, 

1940. ELWELL-SUTTON, L. P., B.A., BM/DKAB, W.C. 1. 
1932. ENTWISTLE, Professor W. J., M.A., Exeter College, 


1931. EVANS, E. D. Priestley, 2 Fortfield Terrace, Sidmouth, 


1932. EVERETT, Miss D., M.A., Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. 
1930. EWERT, Professor A., M.A., Trinity College, Oxford. 


1912. FIEDLER, Professor H. G., M.V.O., M.A., The Lane House, 
Norham Road, Oxford. 

1933. FIRTH, J. R., M.A., 25 Boxwell Road, Berkhamsted, 

1944. FOSTER, I. LI., M.A., University of Liverpool, Liverpool 3. 

1936. FRASER, Professor J., M.A., 4 St. Michael's Mansions, 

Ship Street, Oxford. 

1912. GABRIELSON, Professor Dr. A., Djursholm, Stockholm, 

1910. GARDINER, A. H., M.A., D.Lit., F.B.A., Upton House, 

Wonston, Sutton Scotney, Hants. 

1934. GARMONSWAY, G. N., M.A., 83 The Green, Ewell, 


1912. GIRVAN, R., Ekadasha, Cleveden Gardens, Glasgow, W. 2. 
1926. GOUDY, A. P., M.A., 84 King Street, Cambridge. 

1906. *GRATTAN, Professor J. H. G., B.A., The University, 

1944. GREEN, Miss H. A. C., Royal Holloway College, Engle- 

field Green, Surrey. 

1941. GREEN, Miss M. M., M.A., 36 Lower Belgrave Street, 

S.W. 1. 

1944. HAMILTON, Mrs. J., Ph.D., 77 Ladbroke Grove, W. 11. 

1942. HARLEY, A. H., M.A., 65 Aldenham Avenue, Radlett, 


1935. HARMER, Miss F. E., M.A., The University, Manchester 13. 
1925. HARTING, Professor P. N. U., Lit.D., Euterpestr. 115s, 

Amsterdam (z), Holland. 

1939. HATTO, A. T., M.A., Loughton Manor, Nr. Bletchley, 


1893. *HEATH, Sir Henry F., K.C.B., K.B.E., Brown Tiles, 
Guestling, Nr. Hastings, Sussex. 

1940. HENNING, Walter, Ph.D., 38 Radegund Road, Cambridge. 

1937. HEYWORTH-DUNNE, J., B.A., D.Lit., 49 Belsize Court, 

N.W. 3. 

1944. HILDITCH, K. R., 32 Butts Road, Swan Bank, Penn, 
Wolverhampton, Staffs. 

1941. HORNER, Miss I. B., M.A., 7 Carill Gardens, Fallowfield, 

Manchester 14. 

1936. JOHNSTON, R. C., M.A., Doc. Univ. Strasbourg, The Red 

House, 60 Iffley Road, Oxford. 

1913. * JONES, Professor D., M.A., 3 Marsham Way, Gerrard's 

Cross, Bucks. 

1936. JONES, D. M., B.A., Exeter College, Oxford. 

1923. JOPSON, Professor 'N. B., M.A. (St. John's College, 
Cambridge), Postal Censorship, Edge Lane, Liver- 
pool 7. 


1941. KENT, Professor E. G., Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, 
The Graduate School, Philadelphia 4, Pa., U.S.A. 

1937. LATHAM, R. E., M.A., The Oxford House, Mape Street, 

1936. LEGGE, Miss M. D., M.A., B.Litt., 115 Banbury Road, 

1940. LEWIS, Bernard, B.A., Ph.D., 8 Brondesbury Court, 

Willesden'Lane, N.W. 2. 
1931. LLEWELLYN, Professor E. C., M.A., B.Litt., Brynawel, 

Talbot Road, Llantrisant, Glam. 

1931. LORIMER, Lt.-Col. D. L. R., C.I.E., 2 Brockswood Lane, 

Welwyn Garden City, Herts. 

1940. McCLEAN, R. J., Dr. Phil., M.A., Vinga, Parkway, Gidea 

Park, Essex. 

1936. MclNTOSH, A., M.A., A.M., University College, Swansea. 
1936. MACKIE, Professor W. S., M.A., Drumoak, Greenfield 

Road, Kenilworth, Cape Town, S. Africa. 

1933. MARCKWARDT, A. H., M.A., Ph.D., University of 

Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.A. 
1943. MASSE Y, W. Devereux, British Legation, Stockholm. 

1939. MASTER, A., C.I.E., M.A., 346 Clanricarde Gardens, W. 2. 

1940. MAVROGORDATO, -Professor J., M.A., Exeter College, 


1900. MORLEY, Professor Edith J., 96 Kendrick Road, Reading. 
1943. MUNDY, C. S., B.A., School of Oriental and African 

Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 
1914. MUNRO, J. J., O.B.E., M.C., M.A., Authors' Club, 

2 Whitehall Court, S.W. 1. 

1932. NOBLE, Professor P. S., M.A., The University, 

1932. NORMAN, Professor F., M.A., 2 Tower Cottages, 

Wavendon, Nr. Bletchley, Bucks. 
1926, NORTHUP, Professor C. S., 407 Elmwood Avenue, 

Ithaca, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1934. O'LouGHLiN, J. L. N., M.A., 40 Sheldon Avenue, N. 6. 
1913. ONIONS, C. T., C.B.E., M.A., D.Litt., Litt.D., LL.D., 

F.B.A., 7 Staverton Road, Oxford. 

1932. ORTON, H., M.A., B.Litt., Dept. of English Language, 
The University, Sheffield 10. 

1936. PALMER, L. R., M.A., Ph.D., Cross End, Wavendon, 

Nr. Bletchley, Bucks. 
193L PIDCOCK, W. W., B.A., Tollington School, Muswell 

Hill, N. TO. 
1930 POPE, Miss M. K., M.A., Doc. Univ. Paris, The Cottage, 

Garford, Berks. 


1932. POTTER, S., M.A., B.Litt., Ph.D., University College, 

1931. BEAD, A. W., B.Litt., 38 West 12th Street, New York 11, 
N.Y, U.S.A. 

1931. KHYS, Miss 0., M.A., Gwynva, Barton Lane, Headington, 

1917. RICHARDSON, G. H., 164 Eye Hill, Newcastle-on-Tyne. 

1932. RICHARDSON, L. J. D., M.A., University College, Cardiff. 
1902. *RICHARDSON, W. R., Cheselton, Withdean Crescent, 

Brighton 6. 

1932. Ross, A. S. C., M.A., The Old Homestead, Winslow, 

1936. SEATON, Miss M. E., M.A., 18 Parks Road, Oxford. 
1944. SHEARD, J. A., Ph.D., 58 Park House, Welwyn Garden 

City, Herts. 
1943. SIMON, W., Ph.D., 13 Lisbon Avenue, Twickenham, 

1934. SMITH, A. H., B.A., Ph.D., D.Litt., Middle Farm, Alstone, 

Beckford, Glos. 

1934. SMITHERS, G. V., M.A., c/o Hertford College, Oxford. 
1936. STEWART, J. A., C.I.E., M.C., M.A., LL.D., 17 Avenue 

Road, Bishop's Stortford, Herts. 

1936. STONE, Miss L. W,, M.A., Ditton Cottage, Thames Ditton, 

1943. SWITHINBANK, B. W., C.B.E., M.A., 466 Loose Road, 


1939. TAYLOR, W., M.A., 12 Sharia Okasha, Orman, Egypt. 

1922. *THOMAS, E. J., M.A., D.Litt., University Library, 


1923. THOMAS, Professor F. W., C.I.E., M.A., Ph.D., F.B.A., 

Limen, Bodicote, Nr. Banbury, Oxon. 

1929. TOLKIEN, Professor J. R. R., M.A., 20 Northmoor Road, 

1935. TRITTON, Professor A. S., M.A., D.Litt., School of Oriental 

and African Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 
1934. TUCKER, Miss S. L, M.A., Garden Flat, 35 Beaufort Road, 
Bristol 8. 

1924. *TURNER, Professor R. L., M.C., M.A., Litt.D., F.B.A., 

Haverbrack, Bishop's Stortford, Herts. 

1932. TURVILLE-PETRE, E. 0. G., B.A., Bosworth Hall, Nr. 

1936. TURVILLE-PETRE, Mrs., B.A., B.Litt., Somerville College, 


1944. URWIN, K., M.A., Doc. Univ. Paris, University College, 



1937. VAN PATTEN, N., Stanford University Libraries, Stanford 

University, California, U.S.A. 
1936. VOCADLO, Professor 0., Ph.D., Universita Komenskeho, 

Anglicky Seminar, Safarikovo nam. 1, Bratislava, 


1920. WARD, Miss I. C., B.Litt., D.Lit., School of Oriental and 
African Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 

1908. WEEKLEY, Professor E., M.A., 1 Marine Crescent, Cnccieth, 

1943. WESANDER, E., 16 Lawn Koad, Belsize Park, N.W. 3. 

1931. WEST, Miss C. B., B.A., M.Litt., Ph.D., Royal Holloway 

College, Englefield Green, Surrey. 

1936. WHITEHEAD, F., M.A., D.Phil., Dept. of French, The 

University, Manchester, 13. 

1937. WHITELOCK, Miss D., M.A., St. Hilda's College, Oxford. 
1912. WILLIAMS, Professor R. A., M.A., Ph.D., D.Litt,, 

35 Millington Road, Cambridge. 

1933. WILLOUGHBY, Professor L. A., M.A., Ph.D., D.Litt., 

Briarclough, Cross Oak Road, Berkhamsted, Herts. 

1934. WILSON, R. M., M.A., The University, Leeds 2. 

1914. WOOD, A. C., M.C., M.A., 48 St. Albans Avenue, 
Chiswick, W. 4. 

1928. *WOODWARD, Miss A., M.A., Royal Holloway College, 

Englefield Green, Surrey. 

1930. WRENN, Professor C. L., M.A., King's College, W.C. 2. 
1918. WRIGHT, Professor H. G., M.A., Fern Bank, Victoria 

Avenue, Bangor, N. Wales. 


1908. ABERDEEN. University Library. 

1922. ABERYSTWYTH. National Library of Wales. 

1925. ANN ARBOR, Mich., U.S.A. General Library, University 

of Michigan. 
1927. BASEL, Switzerland. Universitatsbibliothek. 

1932. BERKELEY, Cal., U.S.A. University of California Library. 
1932. BIRMINGHAM. University Library, Edmund Street. 

1944. BRUSSELS, Bibliotheque Royale, c/o Belgian Board of 


1943. BRUSSELS, University Library, c/o Belgian Board of 

1929. BRYN MAWR, Pa., U.S.A. Bryn Mawr College Library. 
1886. CAMBRIDGE. Trinity College Library. 

1929. CAMBRIDGE, Mass., U.S.A. Harvard College Library. 
1934. CARDIFF. The Library, University College of South Wales 

and Monmouthshire. 
1902. CHICAGO, 111., U.S.A. Newberry Library, 60 West 

Walton Place. 
1918. DUBLIN. National Library of Ireland. 


1936. DURHAM, N. C., U.S.A. Duke University Library. 
1933. EDINBURGH. University Library. 

1936. GENT, Belgium. Kijksuniversiteit te Gent, Seminarie voor 

Indo-europeesche Linguistiek (Professor G. van 
Langenhove), Lange Meire 16. 

1933. GLASGOW. Mitchell Library. 


1925. HANOVER, N.H., U.S.A. Dartmouth College Library. 
1915. IOWA CITY, Iowa, U.S.A. The Library, State University 
of Iowa, Library Annex. 

1934. ITHACA, N.Y., U.S.A. Cornell University Library. 
1943. JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, University of the Wit- 

1927. KEIJO, Chosen (Korea), Japan. Keijo Imperial 

University Library. 
1936. LEIDEN, Holland. Leeskamer voor Linguistiek, Univer- 

siteits-Bibliotheek, Kapenburg 70-4. 
1943. LIEGE, University Library, c/o Belgian Board of 

1943. LONDON. Oxford and Cambridge University Club, 

71 Pall Mall, S.W. 1. 
1929. LONDON. University of London Library, W.C. 1. 

1943. LOUVAIN, University Library, c/o Belgian Board of 


1936. LUND, Sweden. Universitets-Biblioteket. 

1932. MADRAS, India. The Treasurer, Madras Christian College. 

1874. MANCHESTER. Christie Library, Manchester University. 

1914. MANCHESTER. John Rylands Library, Deansgate. 

1929. NEW HAVEN, Conn., U.S.A. Yale University Library. 

1944. OSLO, Norway. Universitetsbiblioteket, c/o Eoyal 

Norwegian Ministry of Education. 
1932. OXFORD. The Taylor Institution. 

1932. PARIS, France. Bibliotheque de 1'Universite a la Sorbonne. 
1929. PHILADELPHIA, Pa., U.S.A. University of Pennsylvania 

1925. PRINCETON, N. J., U.S.A. Princeton University Library. 

1933. ST. ANDREWS, Fife. University Library. 

1933. SAN MARINO, Cal., U.S.A. Henry E. Huntington 
Library and Art Gallery. 

1937. SHEFFIELD. The University Library. 

1933. SOUTHAMPTON. University College Library. 

1900. TORONTO, Ont., Canada. University of Toronto Library 

1937. UPPSALA, Sweden. Kungl. Universitets Bibliotek. 

1929. WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A. Library of Congress. 


1939. LINGUISTIC SOCIETY OF AMERICA, Yale Graduate School, 
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A. 









Members should have received the following volumes in return 
for their subscriptions for the years in question : 

1931 Transactions 1925-1930. 

An Old Italian Version of the Navigatio Sancti Brendani, 
edited by E. G. R. Waters. 

1932 Transactions 1931-32. 
Transactions 1917-1920, Part II. 

1933 Transactions 1933. 

Athelston, A Middle English Romance, edited by A. Mel. 

1934 Transactions 1934. 

1935 Transactions 1935. 

The Influence of Low Dutch on the English Vocabulary, 
by E. C. Llewellyn. 

1936 Transactions 1936. , 

1937 Transactions 1937. 

1938 Transactions 1938. 

1939 Transactions 1939. 

1940 Transactions 1940. 

1941 Transactions 1941. 

1942 Transactions 1942. 

1943 Transactions 1943 (New members also 1940 and 1941). 

1944 Transactions 1943 (New members also 1942). 

1945 (to date) Transactions 1944 (New members also 1943). 

The Hon. Secretary will be obliged if Members will notify her 
of any omissions in distribution. 

i X 













Le classement du verbe en tcheque litteraire con- 
temporain (M. VEY) ...... 1 

The Outlook in Philology (Sir WILLIAM A. CRAIGIE) . 12 
The Chronology of Slavonic (W. J. ENTWISTLE) . .28 
An Indoeuropean-Finnougrian Loanword Problem 

(ALANS. C. Ross) . .^ . . .45 

The Negative and Intensive Prefixes in Irish and the 
Origin of Modern Irish an ' very ; great ' (MYLES 


Brahman (W. B. HENNING) 108 

Some Thoughts on the Phoneme (DANIEL JONES) . 119 

The Philological Society's Balance Sheet, 1943 . . 136 

Annual Report for 1943 .138 

List of Members, corrected to April, 1945 . . . i-viii 


demi (milieu XVII 6 siecle-fin XVIII 6 ) pendant laquelle le 
tcheque cessa pratiquement d'etre ecrit. 

Dans les cas de formes doubles, c'est celle qu'emploient 
les auteurs contemporains (ceux de la periode republicaine : 
1918-1938), qui servira de base au classement. II va sans 
dire qu'un classement du verbe vieux-tcheque ouj du verbe 
tcheque parle moderne serait en partie different de celui 
qui sera propose. C'est du tcheque ecrit (litteraire) contem- 
porain, de la morphologic du verbe constatee chez les ecrivains 
actuels, qu'il est question ici. 

Parmi les diverses formes verbales, il faut d'abord exclure, 
comme n'etant pas susceptibles de servir de base au classe- 
ment, celles qui se deduisent mecaniquement d'autres formes 
ainsi d'une part le participe passe actif en -I, le gerondif passe 
et 1'adjectif qui en est derive, le part, passe passif, dont les 
formes dependent de 1'infinitif d'autre part 1'imperatif , le 
gerondif present et 1'adjectif qui en est derive, qu'on tire 
automatiquement de la 3 e pers. du pluriel du present. 

Reste a choisir entre deux formes verbales : le present et 
1'infinitif. Laquelle des deux fournit le plus d'informations 
sur 1'ensemble de la flexion ? Ce n'est pas 1'infinitif, car a 
un infinitif donne correspondent souvent plusieurs types 
flexionnels. Ainsi a un infinitif en -ati (-dti) peuvent corres- 
pondre : pres. -u, ger. -a (brdti, beru, hero) ; pres. -u, ger. 
-aje (drapati) ; pres. -aji, ger. -eye (hrdti) ; pres. -eji, ger. -eje 
(hrdti) ; pres. consonne palatale -i (ou -u), ger. consonne 
palatale -e (rezati, rezi, reze ; Ihdti, Izu, Ize) ; pres. 
consonne palatale -i (ou -u), ger. consonne non palatale -aje 
(kousati, kousi, kousaje ; stonati, stunu) ; pres. -dm, ger. -aje 
(delati), sans meme parler des cas exceptionnels comme spdti, 
spim ; bdti, bojim se ; etc. Au contraire a un present donne 
correspond le plus souvent un seul type flexionnel, quelquefois 
deux, exceptionnellement trois : 

Present -u, ger. -a, infinitif -ti ; ou ger. -a, inf. -ati ; ou ger. 
-aje, inf. -ati (trois types ; auxquels il faut joindre les 


quelques verbes isoles a theme vocalique, et a suffixe 
consonantique au present seulement : jedu, jdu, budu, 
stanu se). 

Present -nu, ger. -na, inf. -nouti. 

Present -voyelle-ji, inf. -voyelle-ti ; ou inf. -voyelle contracte-ti. 

Present -u-ji, inf. -outi ; ou inf. -ovati. 

Present consonne palatale-i, inf. consonne non palatale-ati. 

Present -dm, inf. -ati. 

Present -im, 3 e plur. -eji, inf. -eti. 

Present -im, 3 e plur. -i, inf. -iti ; ou inf. -eti. 

C'est done sur la flexion du present qu'il faudra baser le 
classement du verbe, cette flexion etant resumee en deux 
des personnes du present : la 3 e plur., indispensable, parce 
que tout le groupe du present (imperatif, gerondif) s'en 
deduit en general mecaniquement ; et une autre (par exemple 
la 3 e sg.), afin de distinguer le type deldm, 3. deld, 3. pi. delay i 
du type hraji, hraje, hraji et le type umim, umi, umeji du 
type speji, speje, speji. 

Une fois adopte ce principe, on aboutit necessairement a 
cinq classes de verbes, parce qu'il y a cinq types de present : 
I -e, -ou, II -ne, -non, III -e, -i (-je, -ji), IV -voyelle longue, 
voyelle breve- ji (deld, delaji et umi, umeji), V -i, -i. Et 
on fera ici deux remarques : 

La premiere est qu'il peut paraitre legitime de classer les 
presents I et II ensemble. En eifet, tout le groupe du present a, 
dans ces deux types, la meme flexion : nese, nesou ; ger. 
nesa et padne, padnou ; ger. padna. Toutefois les verbes du 
groupe II ont une individuality bien particuliere, et d'autre 
part ils presentent au groupe de I'innmtif un suffixe qui se 
maintient a 1'infinitif (-nou-ti) et au participe (-nu-t dans la 
plupart des verbes), alors qu'il tombe au preterit (-1 apres 
consonne dans la plupart des verbes), phenomene dont on 
n'a pas 1'equivalent dans les verbes a present -e, -ou. II 
semble preferable de conserver aux verbes en -ne, -non une 
classe distincte. Mais il sera possible (par exemple en les 
reunissant par une accolade) de souligner que les classes I et II 


ont entre elles une ressemblance plus etroite qu'aucune des 
autres classes de verbes. 

La parente plus lointaine qui existe entre les presents 
(mais non les groupes du present) des types I-II et III d'une 
part (voyelle predesinentielle e bref : 1. plur. neseme, padneme, 
myjeme, etc.) et d'autre part des types IV et V (voyelle 
predesinentielle longue : 1. plur. deldme, prosime, etc.), 
vaut egalement d'etre signalee. 

Autre remarque : On classe habituellement le type en -i, 
-eji avec le type (V) en -i, -i, sans doute parce que dans 
les deux cas la 3 e pers. sg. est en -i. Mais il faut observer 
que toute la flexion des verbes de ce type est identique a 
celle des verbes en -d, -aji : 

Pres. voyelle longue, voyelle breve-ji; ger. voyelle breve-je; 
imper. voyelle breve-j. 

deld ; delaji ; delaje ; delej 
umi ; umeji ; umeje ; umej. 

Les deux lois phonetiques qui rendent compte de cette 
identite (*e long > i et *-aj > -ej) sont des lois statiques dont 
on retrouve des exemples dans tout le systeme de la langue. 
Subsidiairement : les verbes en -i, -eji ; inf. -eti (la plupart 
denominatifs inchoatifs) ont une individuality semantique 
qui les rapproche des verbes en -a, -aji, et les ecarte des 
verbes en -*, -i ; inf. -eti (dont plus de moitie sont des verbes 
de " bruits "). 

En partant de ce qui precede, voici a quel classement on 
aboutit. On notera qu'en serrant davantage les definitions 
de chaque type de present dans les sous-classes (nombre de 
syllabes du present, nature de la consonne ou de la voyelle 
qui termine le radical du present), il a ete possible d'eliminer 
la plupart des indeterminations relatives au type d'infinitif 
correspondant qui figuraient encore au tableau donne plus 

rClasse I) Present -e, -ou -> Imperatif zero ou * (-i) ; 

1 Classe II j Gerondif -a, -ouc. 


Classe I. Present -e, -ou -> Imperatif zero ou - (-i) ; 
gerondif -a, -ouc. Theme consonantique sans suffixe au 

la. Presents (tous dissyllabiques, sauf un : cte, ctou) 

en s-, z- ; b- (un verbe), v- (un verbe) ; t-, d- ; k- (c-), 

h- (z-) ; I- (un verbe) ; monosyllabes en r- (r-), n-, m- 

-> Infinitif -ti, pret. -I, part, passe pass. -en. (Type radical.) 

Ex. nese, nesou ; nes ; nesa - nesti, nesl, nesen. 

16. Dissyllabes en r-, n- ; monosyllabes et dissyllabes 

en labiales -> Infinitif -ati. (Type mi-radical mi-suffixal.) 

161. Dissyllabes en r-, n- ; - monosyllabes en v-, p- 

(un verbe) -> Infinitif dissyllabique (dans tous les cas) 

en -ati. La formation de 1'imperatif et du gerondif 

present est reguliere. 

Ex. bere, berou ; ber ; bera -*> brdti, bral, bran 
zve, zvou ; zvi ; zva -> zvdti, zval, zvdn. 
162. Dissyllabes en labiales -> Infinitif trissyllabique 
en -ati. Le gerondif est de cl. IV (-aje) ; 1'imperatif 
tantot de cl. IV (le plus souvent), tantot de cl. I. (Type 

Ex. drape, drdpou ; drap ou drdpej ; drdpaje - drdpati. 
A cote de la cl. I figure une petite serie de verbes dont la 
flexion ne correspond pas exactement aux definitions donnees 
plus haut. Ce sont quelques verbes a theme vocalique, qui 
offrent au present un suffixe ou un elargissement qui ne figure 
pas au groupe de Finfinitif : jede, jedou -*jeti ; jde, jdou ^* 
jiti ; bude, budou - byti ; stane se, stanou se -*- stdti se. Us 
se conjuguent, au groupe du present, comme les verbes 
de cl. I. Us sont d'ailleurs trop peu nombreux et de type 
trop peu homogene pour constituer une classe a part. On 
pourrait les ranger sous le numero I'. 

Classe II. Present -ne, -nou - Imperatif -n (-ni) ; gerondif 
-na, -nouc. Theme consonantique ou vocalique - Infinitif 
-nouti, preterit -I (-nul apres voyelle, ou consonne unique), 
gerondif passe -nuv, part, passe passif -nut (-en dans une 
vingtaine de verbes). 


Ex. rizne, riznou ; rizna -> riznouti, rizl (Inul, schl, vinul), 
riznuv, riznut (-paden). 

Classe III. Present -e, 4 -> Imper. zero; ger. -e, -ic. 
(Somme toute la classe III est le type mou correspondant 
a la cl. I. On remarquera 1'etroit parallelisme de ces deux 

Ilia. Les desinences du groupe du present suivent -j- 
apres base vocalique. 

Illal. Dissyllabes en i- ; u- ; y- ; (une dizaine en) 
e > Infinitif base vocalique-ti. (Type radical.) 

Ex. myje, myji; imp. myj ; ger. myje -> Infin. mijti ; 
pret. myl. 

IIIa2. Dissyllabes en a- ; (sept en) e > Infinit. 
-d-ti. (Infinitif contracte.) 
Ex. hraje, hraji ; hraj ; hraje -> hrdti, pret. hrdl 
hreje, hreji ; hrej ; hreje -* hrdti, pret. hrdl 
III&3. Polyssyllabes (Presents de trois syllabes au 
moins) en -u > Infin. -ovati. (Suffixe a vocalisme 

Ex. buduje, buduji ; buduj ; buduje -> budovati. 
III6. Les desinences du groupe du present suivent une 
consonne palatale ou I > Infinitif consonne non palatale-ati. 
(Type mi-radical mi-sufnxal.) 

III61. (Aucun verbe en s- au present alternant avec 
ch- a I'mfinitif ; aucun verbeenr-, nien^-.) La formation 
de Fimperatif et du gerondif present est reguliere. 
Ex. reze, rezi ; imper. rez ; ger. reze -> rezati 

Ize, Izou ; Izi ; Ize -> Ihdti. 

III62. (Aucun verbe en 1-). Le gerondif est tantot 
de cl. IV (-aje), tantot de cl. Ill ; 1'imperatif est toujours 
de cl. IV. (Type mixte.) 

Ex. kouse, kousi ; kousej ; kousaje ou kouse -* kousati 

stufie, stuftou ; stonej ; stune -> stonati. 
Classe IV. Present 3 e sg. voyelle longue, 3 e plur. voyelle 
breve-ji -> Imperat. voyelle breve-j ; gerond. voyelle breve-je 
-> Infinitif voyelle breve-ti. 


Verbes pour la plupart secondaires. (Type suffixal contracte.) 
IVa. Suffixe -a- dans les deux groupes. Imperatif -ej. 
Ex. deld, delaji ; imp. delej ; ger. delaje -> delati. 
IV6. Suffixe -e- dans les deux groupes. Imperatif -ej. 
On peut, pour la commodite, subdiviser TVb en deux 
series, qui, toutefois, du point de vue de la morphologic 
moderne, ont la meme flexion : 

IV61. Surtout denominatifs [suffixe ancien *--]. 
Ex. umi, umeji ; umej ; umeje -> umeti. 
IV62. Deverbatifs [suffixe ancien *-ja-]. 
Ex. nabizi, nabizeji ; nabizej ; nabizeje -> nabizeti. 
Cas particulier : md, maji a son present et son gerondif 
(nuije) de type a, mais 1'imperatif (mej) et les formes du 
groupe de 1'infinitif (miti, mel, etc.) de type b. 
Classe V. Present -{, -i -> Imperatif zero ou (-1), 
gerond. -e. 

Va. Infinitif -iti, part, passe passif -(j)en. 
Ex. prosi , prosi ; pros ; prose - prositi, p.p.p. prosen. 
V6. Infinitif -eti, p.p.p. -en. 
Ex. trpij trpi ; trp ; trpe -> trpeti. 

On rattachera a V6 (et non a Va), en vertu d'explications 
historiques, les anomaux ou apparemment anomaux : boji se, 
bdti se ; stoji, stdti ; et aussi spi, spdti ; afin de ne pas creer 
de sous-classe pour un si petit nombre de verbes. 

Athematiques. Ji, jedi -+jisti; vi, vedi -* vedeti '; je(st), 
jsou -> (byti). 

Remarques sur diverses classes ou sous-classes. 

Cl. la. Slove, slovou -+ Inf. slouti est, contrairement a ce 
qu'enseignent certaines grammaires, encore en usage. On 
le classera plutot en classe la qu'en classe I' (Travnicek, 
Strucnd mluvnice cesM, p. Ixvii, place slouti, slovu a cote de 
jeti, jedu, etc. et de stdti se, stanu se) ; le phonetisme de 
1'infinitif slouti exclut qu'on puisse sentir comme un suffixe 
ou un elargissement le -v- du present slove, comme c'est le 


cas pour le -d- de jede en regard d'infinitif jeti, etc., ou pour 
V-n- de stane se en regard d'inf. stdti se. 

Cl. 161. Cpdti est a ranger ici, malgre son origine historique, 
parce qu'il se conjugue exactement comme brdti ou zvdti: 
cpe, cpou ; ger. cpa. 

Cl. 162. A 1'exception de zebe, zebou -* Inf. zdbsti, pret. 
zdbl et de slove, slovou -> Inf. slouti (cl. la), tous les dis- 
syllabes en labiale a present en -e, -ou appartiennent a cette 
serie. Et seulement les dissyllabes : le seul trissyllabe qui 
y ait appartenu anciennement, kolebe, kolebou, est aujourd'hui, 
dans la langue litteraire, flechi selon le type de cl. IVa, 
koleba, kolebaji. 

Les dissyllabes en labiale ont ete classes ici, et non en 
classe III, 1 parce que, s'il est vrai que la plupart proviennent 
historiquement de ce qui est ici la cl. Ill, quelques-uns provien- 
nent aussi de cl. I, plusieurs de cl. IV, et il n'y a pas de raison 
de les classer de preference dans 1'une de ces trois classes, 2 la 
flexion de ces verbes au present est sentie par un Tcheque 
d'aujourd'hui comme identique a celle des verbes de cl. I 
(on en trouvera 1'indication en consultant les methodes 
pratiques, non-scientifiques, pour 1'etude de la langue tcheque : 
Mikkula, Progessive Czech; Vymazal, Deutsch-Bohmische 
Gesprdchefilr Deutsche, etc.). L'imperatif, dans la mesure ou 
il n'est pas analogique, est senti comme de formation identique 
a celui de cl. I (drap) ; dans les tres rares cas ou le gerondif 
(ou le participe qui en est derive) n'est pas analogique, il 
est de cl. I (tepa, qu'on trouve par ex. chez Olbracht ; plovouci). 
Quand 1'imperatif et le gerondif sont analogiques (drdpej, 
drdpaje), leur formation n'est pas de cl. Ill, mais de cl. IV. 

Claspe II. Les verbes comme rekne, nalezne, etc., ont leur 
infinitif He cl. I (Hti, nalezti, etc.) plus usuel que celui de cl. II, 
ou seul usuel. On les placera cependant en cl. II, parce que 
c'est le present qu'on a adopte comme base du classement. 
Les doublets tels que oblekne = oblece, etc., devront figurer 
dans les deux classes. 

La seule subdivision morphologique possible de la cl. II 


consisterait a mettre dans une sous-classe particuliere les 
quelques verbes (en provenance de cl. I) dont le present est 
en -ne, -non, mais le groupe de 1'infinitif (ou tout au moins 
1'infinitif et le participe passe passif) est du type radical : 
rekne, reknou ; rekni ; rekna -> rid ; rekl ; fek ; recen. Mais 
1 il ne s'agirait que de quelques unites, 2 surtout 1'infinitif 
du type radical est souvent double, ou remplace dans certains 
composes, par un infinitif analogique en -non- : on a 
dorici seulement, mais odrici ou odreknouti, podrici se et 
podreknouti se, etc., et aussi vyrici et vyrknouti. Le depart 
serait impossible. 

La subdivision en perfectifs (surtout deverbatifs, momen- 
tanes) et en imperfectifs (surtout denominatifs, inchoatifs) 
est commode, et il n'y a pas de raison de ne pas la conserver. 
Mais elle n'est pas morphologique. 

IIIa3. Les verbes radicaux qui ont anciennement appartenu 
a cette flexion (kuje, kuji -> kovati, etc.) sont tous passes 
a d'autres types flexionnels, presque toujours en se dedoublant 
(kuje, kuji - kouti [cl. Illal] ; kove, kovou -> kovati [cl. 162] ; 
kovd, kovaji -> kovati [cl. IVa], etc.). Meme infin. psovati 
(a cote de psouti), en regard de seul present psuje, psuji 
(psujou), parait avoir cede le pas a psouti (c'est en effet p.p. p. 
sepsut qu'emploient Vancura, Pole ornd a vdlecnd, et d'autres). 
II y a tendance manifeste a flechir les dissyllabes en -uje, 
-uji qui ont appartenu a la classe IIIa3, comme les dissyllabes 
en -uje, -uji de la classe Illal, et a ne conserver en IIIa3 
que les polysyllabes (secondaires et emprunts). C'est parce 
que cette tendance a abouti, que la classification proposee 
ne maintient pas ici un sous-groupe de verbes radicaux 
(dissyllabiques) qui a cesse d'etre reel. 

Cl. III6. Les verbes en /- d'une part, n- de 1'autre ont 
3. plur. -ou et non -i. II faut cependant les classer en cl. Ill 
(et non en cl. I), parce que le gerondif est en -e ; - et aussi, 
pour les verbes a present en si- et en #-, parce qu'ils opposent 
une consonne (ou un groupe de consonnes) palatale au present 
a une consonne (ou un groupe) non palatale a 1'infinitif. 


II en est de meme pour Ize, Izou ; ger. Ize -> Infinitif Ihdti. 
On ne peut le placer en cl. I, non seulement parce que le 
gerondif est Ize, mais encore parce que le present 3. plur. 
Ihou est exceptionnel dans la langue proprement litteraire. 
La seule forme usuelle (et aussi en tcheque parle) est Izou, 
1. sing. Izu. 

CL IVa. II faut placer ici da, daji, qui se conjugue comme 
deld, delaji. L'ancien gerondif dada est sorti de 1'usage. 

II reste a montrer que, dans le classement qui precede, 
on a pu, en serrant les definitions de chaque type de present, 
reduire la plupart des indeterminations qui subsistaient 
lorsqu'on se contentait de definitions plus laches. 

En classe I, il n'en subsiste plus, si ce n'est pour les 
quelques (quatre) monosyllabes en n- de cl. la (tne, tnou ; 
pne, pnou; etc.) qui risquent d'etre confondus avec les 
monosyllabes de cl. II (hne, hnou, etc.). C'est d'ailleurs ce 
qui s'est produit pour plusieurs d'entre eux (et aussi, par 
extension, pour les deux monosyllabes en m-), a des degres 
divers, meme dans la langue litteraire (par ex. mne, mnou, 
anciennement de cl. I, est passe entierement a la cl. II), 
et d'une maniere plus etendue encore dans la langue parlee. 
Inversement un verbe de cl. II, devenu monosyllabique 
(roz-zne, roz-znou, de roz-zhne), a developpe dans la langue 
litteraire contemporaine des formations de cl. I (Infin. rozziti, 
pret. rozzal, part, passe passif rozzat ; imperfectif derive 
sufiixal rozzinati), qu'emploient a peu pres tous les 

En classe Ilia, il y a indetermination entre les dissyllabes 
en -eje, -eji a infinitif en -eti de type Illal (au nombre d'une 
dizaine : speje, speji - speti) et ceux a infinitif contracte en 
-dti de type IIIa2 (sept verbes : hreje, hreji -> hrdti). 

En classe III6, il y a indetermination entre les verbes du 
type regulier (1) et ceux du type mixte (2). Mais il s'agit 
en realite d'une serie unique de verbes en voie d'evolution 
analogique, dont les individus ont en partie une flexion mal 


fixee, qui varie chez les divers auteurs, ou meme chez un 
auteur donne. f 

Enfin en classe V, il y a indetermination entre les verbes a 
infinitif en -iti (qui constituent la serie de beaucoup la plus 
nomoreuse de verbes tcheques) et ceux a infinitif en -eti. 
On notera que ces derniers ne sont qu'au nombre d'un peu 
plus d'une centaine, dont plus de la moitie sont des verbes 
de "bruits". 

On constatera que le classement propose ecarte les seuls 
risques de faute analogique auxquels soit guere expose 
1'etudiant etranger, ou meme tcheque : a savoir 1'emploi 
des terminaisons de present -u, -ou de cl. I en cl. Ill (myju, 
myjou ; rezu, rezou au lieu de -i, -i) ; et celui de -eji de-cl. IV6 
en cl. V (trpeji, et meme proseji au lieu de -i). 

Bien entendu 1'ordre dans lequel les differentes classes out 
ete rangees les unes par rapport aux autres, n'a pas en lui- 
meme de valeur. On pourrait, en adoptant un principe 
complementaire, donner les numeros I, II, ... aux types 
productifs (ici IVa et b ; Va ; IIIa3,...), etc. ; ou adopter 
d'autres dispositifs encore. II conviendrait cependant d'y 
garder les classes qui sont appelees ici I et II, 1'une aupres 
de 1'autre, en raison de leur etroite ressemblance. Mais c'est 
la une question subsidiaire. Ce qui est important, c'est de 
placer ensemble ce qui va ensemble, et de grouper chaque 
type flexionnel autour de la forme verbale qui fournit a elle 
seule le plus d'informations sur 1'ensemble. 


THE Philological Society has now been in existence for more 
than a century, having been founded in 1830. If any of its 
presidents, during the first ten or twenty years after its 
foundation, had ventured to forecast the future course of 
philological studies, even his highest expectations would 
have fallen far short of what was actually accomplished even 
before the Society had reached its jubilee. To realize this 
it is only necessary to consider briefly the state of philological 
knowledge at that time in a single field, that of English and 
the other Germanic languages. (I venture to say other Germanic 
languages, although I have at times been taken to task by 
correspondents who draw my attention to the fact that in 
any English dictionary the words of Germanic origin are 
greatly outnumbered by those from the Romanic and classical 
tongues.) What means for the exact study of Old and Middle 
English were available to the scholar or the student in 1830 
or for twenty years afterwards ? Anglo-Saxon texts had 
been printed at various times from the sixteenth century 
onwards, and a few scholars had acquired a fair, or even 
good, knowledge of the language, especially of the prose ; 
but the scientific study of Anglo-Saxon grammar and 
phonology was only just beginning, and was not put on a 
sound footing until some forty or fifty years later. The 
most modern dictionary was that of Bosworth, dating from 
1838 and not fully replaced by the later edition until 1898, 
and by the Supplement finished in 1921. In Middle English 
a fair number of texts were available in print, but only a 
few in a reliable form ; the grammar and phonology had 
not yet been studied, nor the dialects distinguished, and no 
dictionary was available until the appearance of Halliwell's 
two volumes of Archaic and Provincial Words in 1847. It 
was not till 1863 that Herbert Coleridge's modest Dictionary 
of the First, or Oldest Words in the English Language was 


published by the Philological Society. Speaking generally, 
one may safely say that some fifty years had passed from the 
foundation of the Society before English philology was set 
on a firm basis, and I need not remind you how much of 
this progress was due to the Society itself and to its members. 
One has only to look at the names which appear in the past 
volumes of the Transactions to be reminded of how much we 
owe to only a few of these, to Furnivall and Morris, Skeat 
and Sweet, Murray and Bradley. 

The philological study of English naturally implies some 
study of the older stages of the related languages. Here 
again the scholar in the middle of the nineteenth century was 
still imperfectly equipped. To take only one example, it was 
only with great difficulty that he could acquire a competent 
knowledge of Old Norwegian and Icelandic, so essential for 
the study of the Scandinavian element in English. Some 
grammars and dictionaries existed, but mainly in foreign 
tongues, and it was not till 1874 that the Oxford University 
Press published the final parts of the Icelandic-English 
Dictionary, which has not yet been superseded, and is now 
almost unprocurable. This is only one of the many dictionaries 
now essential to every student which were not even begun 
when the Society was founded, such as the Deutsches Worter- 
buch which began in 1854, the dictionaries of Middle and 
Modern Dutch, of Middle Low-German, of Middle Swedish, 
of Older Danish, and many more of lesser range, but each 
valuable in some respect. 

This brief survey will make it clear, I imagine, that no 
president of the Society in its early days would have had any 
chance of being a successful prophet if he had tried to forecast 
what might be achieved by philologists in the years that then 
lay ahead. I realize that I should be no more likely to anticipate 
the future correctly if I attempted to discuss the Outlook in 
Philology on these lines, nor is it my intention to do so. 
What I had in mind in choosing this subject was that it 


might be desirable to take stock at present of what was 
already in course of being done, but had been interrupted or 
delayed by the unfavourable conditions of the past five years, 
and to point out certain difficulties which are likely to affect 
the coming, and to some extent even the present, generation 
of philologists. Beyond that I shall only touch slightly on 
some lines of research which might profitably be pursued by 
those whose task it will be to keep the study of philology 
alive and progressive. 

I shall begin with the field with which I am most familiar 
and with which every philologist is more or less concerned 
that of lexicography, and first of all that of English lexico- 
graphy. As long ago as April, 1919, at a meeting of this 
Society, I suggested that the future of English lexicography 
lay in the making of separate dictionaries for the several 
distinct periods of the language that there ought to be 
(in addition to Old English) a comprehensive dictionary of 
Middle English, another of Early Modern (or what Professor 
Skeat called Tudor and Stuart) English, still another of the 
Older Scottish Tongue which covered both of those periods, 
and finally one on a large scale of the modern language from 
1700 to the present day. My proposals were so far carried 
into effect that the compilation of the Middle English and 
Early Modern dictionaries was undertaken by American 
scholars with considerable assistance from research funds 
and from some of the universities. Unfortunately, the plans 
to a certain extent miscarried, and it was not until five years 
ago that the Middle English dictionary seemed to be in a fair 
way to become a reality. Then came the war, making further 
progress difficult, and entirely blocking the possibility of 
beginning to print such copy as has already been prepared. 
The Early Modern dictionary is even more in a state of 
suspended animation, and when it may be revived is quite 
uncertain. The Older Scottish was more successful, and the 
publication of this in parts began in 1931, but since the ninth 
part (ending accidentally with the word DULL) appeared in 


May, 1940, it has been beyond the powers of the Oxford 
University Press to produce another part, although all of 
it is now in type. As this only goes to the end of E, the prospect 
of my being able to finish the work at an early date is obviously 
not a bright one. 

When I proposed the " period dictionaries ", as the late 
Mr. Wharton aptly named them, there was one which I had 
not thought of, but which is the only one that has actually 
been brought to completion, viz. the Dictionary of American 
English on historical principles. It was well that this was so 
far advanced before the United States entered the war, 
otherwise this also might have stopped in mid career and have 
been indefinitely suspended. 

From this brief summary it will be seen that in respect of 
lexicography the student of English philology is only in 
a very slightly better position than he was five years ago, and 
that it is impossible to say when the situation will improve. 
Plans were also being made by some American scholars for 
a new dictionary of Anglo-Saxon (or perhaps it might be 
Old English). I have seen no mention of these plans of late, 
but I imagine they are also in abeyance, and that for a good 
long time to come Bosworth-Toller will hold the field, and, 
after all, supply as much information about the Anglo- 
Saxon vocabulary as most students want, while the few 
scholars who ask for more can usually find it for themselves. 

In at least two related languages the chances of new 
dictionaries being produced have certainly been greatly 
lessened by the war. The North Frisian dialects, for which 
written and printed evidence is scanty before 1900, had 
recently become a subject of interest to the Frisians them- 
selves ; several of the dialects were being more extensively 
used both for prose and verse, and there was much collecting 
of words and phrases in the various localities. It was intended 
that this work should culminate in a combined dictionary of 
all the dialects, but whatever progress was made w r ith this, 
it can hardly have been carried much further during the past 


five years. This is all the more to be regretted as the Frisian- 
speaking population was already rapidly diminishing, and 
the evacuation of some of the islands is certain to hasten the 
process of decline and final disappearance. It will certainly 
be difficult after the war to make the record of these dialects 
as perfect as if the work could have been completed in peaceful 

Norwegian scholars had also been planning a comprehensive 
dictionary of modern Norwegian. How far the preparations 
for this had been carried I do not know, but even if the 
material collected for it has not been destroyed (which is 
not impossible 1 ) several years have already been lost, and 
several more may pass before it can be resumed. It will 
certainly be a long time before the student of Norwegian can 
dispense with the necessity of using a number of different 
dictionaries to discover all that he may want to know. 

I have already mentioned how the English philologist of 
last century was at a disadvantage with regard to Old Norse 
and Icelandic until the publication of the dictionary commonly 
known as Cleasby-Vigfussion, a designation which is correct 
so far as it goes, but does not do justice to the Icelandic 
scholars who worked for Cleasby in Copenhagen and whose 
share in the work is so ungenerously disparaged in the Preface 
and the Life of Cleasby. (The mistakes in the dictionary, 
however, some of which have led good scholars astray, are 
mainly Vigfusson's own.) }n addition to Cleasby- Vigfusson, 
the student who is acquainted with Danish can also have 
recourse to the second edition of Fritzner's Oldnorsk Ordbog, 
completed in 1896, and the large dictionary of modern 
Icelandic by Sigfus Blondal and his wife, published in 1920-4. 
I mention these, however, merely to lead up to a matter of 
some importance with regard to the compilation of the larger 
dictionaries, to which I shall come in the next part of this 
paper. Icelanders have for some time thought it unbecoming 

1 At the meeting I was glad to learn from Professor Sommerfelt that 
the collections were still intact. 


that the only good dictionaries of their language should have 
the words explained in a foreign tongue. To remedy this, 
plans have from time to time been made, and material 
collected, for the compilation of an all-Icelandic dictionary, 
but so far the lexicon has not materialized. Just before the 
war broke out, the task of providing one was entrusted to 
Stefan Einarsson at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. 
What progress he has made I do not know, but I hardly 
think that he can have devoted his whole time to such work 
during the past two or three years. In Reykjavik also some 
are planning a dictionary of later Icelandic, from the fifteenth 
century onwards. 

Now, all such designs are admirable, and philological 
studies would gain greatly by their accomplishment. The 
unfortunate thing is that they are so apt to break down on 
two accounts time and money. It is safe to say that every 
estimate of the time it will take to compile a large dictionary 
of any living language, or of any language with an extensive 
literature, is certain to fall far short of the mark. The Society's 
own dictionary, the O.E.D., is a case very much in point. 
Not one of those members who in 1857-8 bravely decided 
to make a completely " new English dictionary " could have 
dreamed that the mere collecting of material would go on for 
twenty years, and still less that the converting of that material 
into a dictionary would take no less than fifty. Ten years 
was the original estimate for this, and I have observed on 
more than one occasion that ten years is what Plato called 
" the lie in the soul " of the optimistic lexicographer. When 
Professor Dahlerup planned his dictionary of modern Danish 
he came to Oxford to see the methods employed in making 
the O.E.D. He had fixed on ten years as the time that would 
be required for the work. We assured him that he could not 
do it in that time. " Oh, but I must," he said, " I have a 
contract with the publisher to that effect." We replied that 
it did not matter how many contracts he had, he would not 
do it in ten years. He was not convinced, however, that his 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. C 


estimate was too sanguine. Eighteen years later he produced 
a specimen of the letter A. I am not certain that the work 
was finished before the war ; it may have been. 

In 1923, when I was in Prague, I was shown the elaborate 
methods which were being employed in collecting material 
for a dictionary of modern Czech. My comment was that if 
those methods were adhered to they would end in producing 
such a mass of material that it would be impossible to digest 
it in any reasonable time. Naturally my views did not carry 
conviction ; it was only a dozen years or so later that their 
truth became obvious, and I was informed that a smaller 
dictionary than had originally been planned would now be 
produced, and that the first part of this might be expected 
within a year. If it was, and if any others followed it, it is 
too much to hope that the work is going on now. Even the 
material may no longer be in existence. 

From these instances, and others which I might cite, there 
are two lessons to be learned. The one is that it is wiser to 
over-estimate rather than under-estimate the time that such 
work will take. The other is that every device must be used 
to reduce the amount of work required to convert the material 
into printer's copy. Unless the most practical methods are 
employed from the very beginning and all through the work, 
there is every chance that the generation which sees the 
dictionary begun will not see it finished, and that philologists 
will for many years be deprived of information which they 
might otherwise have had. 

Judging from the instances I have given, and assuming 
that conditions are no more favourable in other fields of 
language study, I think it safe to predict that in respect of 
lexicography those who engage in philological studies for 
some years to come ten or fifteen, or perhaps more will 
not be any better off than they are now. Will they be better 
off in other respects ? I must say that this seems to be very 
doubtful, when several things are taken into account. 


In the first place we have to reckon with the tendency 
in the universities to devote more and more attention to the 
physical sciences and other lines of study and research- which 
have a practical value. This not only tends to lessen the 
proportion of students who engage in language study, but 
also to divert to the practical subjects an increasing number 
of scholarships and fellowships, thereby reducing the number 
of those who can afford to remain on the ' learned side ' of 
university work. There is little prospect at present of linguistic 
research being provided for on any scale which would 
make it a favourite subject ; the tendency in fact is in the 
other direction. Nearly twenty years ago the General Educa- 
tion Board of New York (one of the departments of the 
Kockefeller Foundation) embarked on a scheme of subsidizing 
research in the Humanities, and did so on a liberal scale for 
some years, when it decided to withdraw the support entirely, 
and reserve the funds for more practical purposes. The 
decision was really not surprising, considering the nature of 
many of the research projects and the meagre results that 
as a whole came out of them. There is, I am convinced, no 
probability that a similar experiment will be tried in this 
country. We must, therefore, I believe, be prepared to find 
that the philologist in the immediate future will have to find 
his main (if not his only) reward in the pleasure and satisfaction 
which his work gives to him. 

This, however, brings with it a difficulty which is steadily 
increasing. Members of the Philological Society at the time 
of its foundation, and for quite a number of years afterwards, 
could acquire most, if not all, of the important books in 
their own subject without having to spend much of their 
income in buying them. And even when these began to 
increase in number, the sum annually required to keep pace 
with them was not beyond the means of most. To-day, the 
situation is very different. No young philologist, except by 
some very fortunate chance, can immediately acquire all 
the books and periodicals already published which are essential 


for the successful prosecution of his studies. If his line is 
English of the older period, he has neither the means to buy, 
nor the space to hold, all that has now been printed of Old 
and Middle English, to say nothing of such necessary auxiliaries 
as the Oxford English Dictionary. More and more he must 
rely upon the university or college library to provide these 
for him, and the use he can make of them is often limited by 
the time he can spend in the library. Even professors of 
English sometimes hesitate to spend as much as they would 
have to do to acquire all that they ought to have, and it is 
at times possible to see that errors they have fallen into are 
entirely due to this cause. The only way to obviate this 
natural tendency to economize on books, and rely on the 
library, would be for colleges and universities to adopt the 
rule that part of a professor's salary would only be paid in 
books. It is quite certain that every professor would take 
care that he got all he was entitled to. 

In respect of library facilities the American professor very 
commonly is at an advantage compared with one in this 
country. He has a room, with his own books, in one of the 
university buildings, with easy access to a departmental 
library or the general library of the university, and usually 
with unlimited powers of borrowing from these. He is thus 
able to pursue a course of study more fully and with less 
expenditure of time than one who has to work at home and 
use the university library only when he can get to it. That is 
one reason why articles in American learned journals frequently 
present such an array of references to books and articles 
dealing with the subject or the special point under 

I have already said that the young philologist cannot 
possibly acquire for himself all the periodicals which would 
be useful to him. Those periodicals also create for him a 
difficulty of another kind. Some of them have already existed 
for many years, and run to a large number of volumes, while 
new ones are being steadily added. It thus becomes moi 


and more difficult for the scholar or student to discover 
whether, and when, and where, articles may have appeared 
in these which would supply him with the information he 
seeks and prevent him from doing over again work that has 
already been done. Obviously a superabundance of such 
sources may be at times a hindrance to further study, but the 
real danger lies in the impossibility of an exhaustive search 
even in a well-furnished library. In some subjects, of course, 
the difficulty will be greater than in others. When the Anglo- 
Norman Text Society was being founded I went through the 
bibliography in Vising's Anglo-Norman Language and Litera- 
ture to see how many texts had already been printed. The 
number was larger than I expected, but I found that they 
were so scattered, and so many of them in foreign periodicals 
or the proceedings of foreign societies, that a considerable 
proportion of them could be found in this country only in such 
libraries as the British Museum or Bodleian, if even there. 

As an example of this I may just mention that the latest 
and best edition of the Anglo-Norman life of St. Edmund 
appeared in 1935 in the proceedings of the Swedish learned 
society whose publications bear the cumbrous title of 
" Goteborgs kungliga vetenskaps- og vitterhets- samhalles 
handlingar ". Here it is bound up in one volume with two 
articles of purely Swedish interest (the one historical and the 
other biographical), and a third on the formation of nouns 
in- Indo-European. Anyone not a member of the Society 
might well be excused for not discovering the edition for some 
years after it had appeared, and might have some difficulty 
in procuring a copy of the volume containing it. 

Assuming, however, as we assuredly may, that philologists- 
will continue to find new subjects on which to write, the 
next question to be considered is what prospects there are, 
in the years immediately ahead, of getting articles or books 
into print. No doubt, in this country and in the United 
States, such philological journals as already exist will con- 
tinue to be published, so that there may not be much (if any) 
difficulty in getting articles printed as soon as printers and 


paper become abundant again. With books the case may 
be different. We must bear in mind the leeway that all 
publishers have to make up through the loss of time during 
the past five years, and the .actual destruction of stocks, as 
well as the great probability that to most of them other kinds 
of literature will seem more likely to be in demand than 
philological studies. It will, I imagine, have to be a work of 
exceptional merit, and possibly of some interest to others 
than philologists, that will tempt any publisher for some 
years to come. 

In the list of Spring Books announced by the Oxford 
University Press there are twenty-three headings (Africa, 
Ancient World, Art, and Archaeology, etc.), but Language or 
Philology are not among them. The University of Chicago 
Press is equally silent on these subjects. In a recent " select 
list of new and forthcoming books " there is a heading, 
"Literature and Philology," but under this I find only three 
entries for the second of these. Two are new editions of a 
Russian Dictionary and Grammar, for which one can see 
good reasons. The third is a work entitled The Loom of 
Language, which ought to be a work of importance, judging 
by the note which describes it in these words : " The historical 
drama of the evolution of human speech on a planetary scale 
provides a theme which brings to life the bones of grammar." 

There is also the question to what extent and how soon the 
philological journals on the Continent will recover from the 
effects of the war. The joint contribution which these have made 
to philological studies is so great that any reduction in their 
number, or delay in their revival, will certainly retard progress 
in many lines. We may, I think, anticipate that for some years 
to come the countries that have suffered most from the war 
will have more necessary work to do than to pursue the study 
of philology to the same extent as before. 

One factor which has been steadily increasing the burden 
of the student of philology for some time past may now be 
mentioned. For about a century now, but in some cases 


much more recently, various minor language areas in Europe 
have been coming more and more to use their own language 
not only for popular or general literature, but also in scholarly 
and scientific works. Until fairly late in the nineteenth 
century it could safely be assumed that any important 
philological work would be written in one of the better-known 
languages in English, German, French, or even Latin. 
While this still holds to a considerable extent it is no longer 
to be depended on. Philological as well as other scholarly 
or scientific articles and books may appear in any language 
which has been sufficiently cultivated to admit of being used 
for the purpose. So long as the language belongs to the 
Germanic or Romanic group the average philologist may be 
able at least to get the general sense of what the writer has 
to say though Icelandic on the one hand and Roumanian 
on the other may prove difficult without some serious study 
but if a Slav, or Hungarian, or Finn chooses to write in his 
own language there are few who can make themselves directly 
acquainted with what he has to say. I mentioned Icelandic 
because a case in point has just come into my hands. The 
University of Iceland has recently issued, as its Annual for 
1940-1, a work by one of its professors, Dr. Alexander 
Johannesson, with the title " On the original language and 
home of the Indo-Germans ". This, however, gives a very 
imperfect idea of the contents of the work. The writer accepts 
in full the view, so strongly put forward by Sir Richard 
Paget, that language originated in gestures, and that certain 
sounds are closely connected with these. The verbal roots, 
which according to this theory were developed from those 
sounds, can be clearly traced throughout the Indo-Germanic 
languages, some of which have preserved more of them than 
others ; in this respect Greek stands highest, and next to it 
comes Icelandic, which thus has a larger primitive element in 
modern use than Lithuanian, or the Celtic tongues, or Latin. 
The greater number of the 160 large pages of Dr. Alexander's 
work are devoted to exhibiting this feature of Icelandic in 
great detail. 


Now it seems to me that any philologist who is interested 
in this theory of the origin of speech would naturally wish 
to read this elaborate illustration of it, but even some know- 
ledge of Danish or Swedish will not take anyone far towards 
ability to read modern Icelandic when employed in a work of 
this nature. 

There is a question regarding the future of philological 
studies which can only be a matter of conjecture at present, 
but which must be taken into account in this outlook. Is it 
certain that in the years to come philologists will continue 
to be interested in the main in the same family or families 
of languages and will study these on the same lines as hitherto ? 
Ever since scientific philology began certain definite lines 
have formed the basis of most of the research phonology, 
phonological changes, word-formation, comparison of the 
forms in the various languages and these to a great extent 
limited to the Indo-European family. Not only have all the 
main languages been examined and re-examined in these 
and other respects, but the sub-divisions have also been 
minutely studied ; studies of the various dialects must now 
amount to hundreds, and are certainly far too numerous for 
any one philologist even to read, to say nothing of assimilating 
and remembering their contents. It seems to me doubtful 
whether indefinite continuation of this line of study is likely 
to lead to anything new. In place of accumulating more and 
more details by similar studies of dialects not yet thoroughly 
examined, the material already available might become the 
basis for an endeavour to arrive at some general conclusions 
on the origin, nature, and content of .dialects. There is, for 
instance, the problem why dialects develop to a greater 
extent in some languages than in others why there are more 
dialects in a few square miles of Slesvig than in hundreds of 
square miles in Russia ; why each valley in Norway, and each 
island in the Faeroes has a dialect of its own, while Iceland 
with a population mainly of Norwegian origin has no real 
dialect variations. Or there is the question why dialects of 


different languages develop the same phonetic changes in 
contrast to the standard language from which they deviate. 
Again, we have innumerable vocabularies, large and small, 
of separate dialects, as well as more comprehensive works 
like the English Dialect Dictionary, bu we still lack any work 
on the general nature of dialect vocabulary, on the extent 
to which it tends to retain words which have become obsolete 
in the standard language, and on the other hand to create new 
words, or at least to employ words for which no origin can 
be found. Comparative philology naturally is concerned 
with those words which are common to different languages, 
or to those words which are not limited to one dialect, but 
by confining its attention to these it leaves out of account 
the large number of words which are peculiar to each language 
or each dialect. It seems to me that here is a line of philological 
study which nfay become quite fruitful of results, and one 
in which the evidence from modern dialects might help to 
show how similar developments took place in the older 

In a country with numerous dialects the range of dialect 
words also deserves more study than it has received. Linguistic 
atlases, where they exist, help to supply the details for this, 
but more is needed before the main lines can be clearly seen 
or their significance become obvious. A reasoned account, 
for example, of the Scandinavian loan-words in English 
dialects would distinguish between those which are purely 
local, those with a wider range, and those which are known 
over the whole area, and would endeavour to discover the 
reasons for the differences. 

It is no doubt much more difficult to deal in this way 
with words than with sounds, but it would be a pity if philology 
were to become entirely restricted (as it rather tends to be) 
to phonology and morphology. 

Even in those subjects, however, instead of a further 
accumulation of details, it would be useful if those already 
collected were more closely studied to see whether some 


general principles might not be deduced from them instead 
of being content to accept the same or similar phenomena 
in different languages or dialects merely as isolated facts, 
obvious but unexplained. Why, for example, Bulgarian and 
Roumanian have the postposited article in common with the 
Scandinavian languages. Why some languages, even within 
the same group, show extensive palatalization while others 
do not, as e.g. Swedish, Norwegian, and Fseroese in contrast 
to Icelandic and Danish, or Lettish as compared with 
Lithuanian. Why the double II of Latin (as in bellus, m.ollis) 
has become dd in Sicilian, and the double II of Old Norse 
has had the same development in Norwegian dialects. Why 
all the Germanic languages except Icelandic and Faeroese 
have voiced the initial p in the demonstratives, giving d in 
English and d in the other languages. Why entirely unrelated 
dialects agree in converting the long e and o into the diphthongs 
ie, ia, and uo, ua, both of them occurring in English dialects 
in the same word and giving the variants steean and stuon. 

No doubt a fool can ask more questions than a wise man 
can answer, but the wise man might learn something by 
trying to discover whether a few questions of this nature 
admit of being answered. 

One factor which may affect the future of philology is 
that there may be a considerable change in the languages 
to which the majority of philologists direct their attention. 
The Indo-European languages have had a long run, and it 
would not be surprising if others began to receive more 
notice than they have done hitherto. In the United States 
not a few scholars have for some time past made special 
studies of the various native languages of America, and have 
sometimes carried over ideas gained from these into general 
works on the nature of language. Here, however, as in many 
other special fields, the development of such studies is limited 
by the number of those who are attracted by them or who 
by circumstances are brought into direct contact with the 
language or languages involved. There is every probability 


that the number of these will increase in the coming years. 
The expansion of the British dominions, and the growth of 
British influence in Africa and Asia, will lead more and more 
Britons to acquire a knowledge of various languages of these 
continents, and among these there will certainly not be 
wanting, in the future, as in the past, some who not merely 
acquire a language for practical purposes, but will make it 
a subject of real study, and become able to enrich philology 
from their knowledge of it. The war has undoubtedly opened 
up great possibilities in this respect. How else would so many 
young Britons and Americans at the present time be acquiring 
a knowledge of Japanese ? And who knows how many strange 
tongues are becoming to some extent familiar to men who 
otherwise would never even have heard of them ? Some of 
these may yet take to philology, and starting from a new 
basis originate a line of study as full of interest and of discovery 
as those which have hitherto been pursued. In the meantime 
the question is how soon we may expect some recovery from 
the setback due to the war, of which I have given only such 
examples as come within my own knowledge. No doubt 
some of the members present will be able to add to these 
from the special studies with which they are familiar. 


FOR at least three thousand years the Slavonic common 
language developed before the oldest of its progeny was put 
on record as Old Bulgarian. Lithuanian and the other Baltic 
languages remained undisclosed for half a millennium more, 
and when they came to light it was as modes of speech for 
the most part unaltered since a remote antiquity. The 
intervening centuries must have been largely inert. The 
Slavonic common tongue, on the other hand, has an archaic 
air which is often illusory. Even in our own time the various 
Slavonic speeches have seven cases and a verbal paradigm 
based on aspect, along with copious remains of the dual 
number ; they make use of vowel-alternation according to 
symmetrical schemes, and their syntax is notably simple. 
It would be very easy to suppose that these conservative 
appearances in the Slavonic structure correspond to ancient 
elements of the Indo-European parent tongue ; but it would 
be highly misleading so to conclude. There has been at work 
a steady reconsideration of every grammatical element so 
that the same grammatical purpose is met by new means, 
or old elements have new functions. 

Let us consider, for instance, verbal aspect. Aspect and 
time are present in all verbs in all languages, since they are 
necessary to the verb as phenomenal. Languages differ, 
however, whether to express the aspect by the paradigm and 
leave time to circumstantial indications in the sentence, or 
whether to base the paradigm on time and find periphrastic 
formulae for the aspect. There are, of course, also languages 
like English which express both time and aspect circum- 
stantially, but we are speaking of the historical development 
of the Indo-European family. Now this development has 

1 I have to express my indebtedness for valuable criticisms to the Editor 
and to Mr. W. A. Mori son. 


been from a formal recognition of aspect to a formal recognition 
of time ; and consequently the Slavonic languages, with 
their formal insistence on aspect, have an air of archaism. 
But this is illusory. The intervening states have been as 
follows : The Indo-European verb distinguished between 
the perfective (aorist) and the imperfective aspects by means 
of vowel-mutation. The imperfective Gk. e^co and perfective 
eax ov (^/*segh- *sgh-) were at first no more closely related 
than either to the noun o^o? (<\/*sogh-). In Slavonic they 
have sometimes come together in the paradigm of one verb, 
and sometimes given separate verbs. As the distinction 
was not one of time, the Slavonic present tenses show both 
the e- and zero-grades of the root, as also the o-gra'de in 
denominatives. Bui the sigmatic aorist imposed the notion 
of paradigm since it established an obvious relation between 
the aorist and the present (Gk. Ae'yco e'Ae^a), and the aorist, 
as a perfected non-present, became associated with the past. 
Slavonic, therefore, retained the old perfective/imperfective 
vowel-mutation without distinction of aspect (except in so 
far as inherent in each verb), together with an asigmatic and 
two sigmatic aorists denoting completed action in past time 
only. To secure for past time an imperfective aspect it was 
necessary to invent an imperfect tense. This device came 
into use at some time when it was still possible (as it has 
never been in the historical era) to add suffixes directly to 
a root. The Slavonic be-achu (*bhe- + esom) is of the same 
vintage as Lat. fu-eram (*bhu- -f- esam). A new device, 
however, was coming into existence in the early centuries 
of our era to express the perfective/imperfective distinction. 
The simple verbs tended to be imperfective, and their 
derivatives perfective ; and prepositional prefix thus became 
a sign of perfectivity. The suffix -va- could be used to provide 
imperfectives for these prepositional perfectives. Out of 
this variety of resources new paradigms based in aspect 
duly arose, since among the prepositional derivatives some 
obtained no additional significance from the preposition, 


but served merely to denote perfectivity, and so alternated 
with the imperfect! ve simple verb. Gradually they entered into 
association ; the Slavonic conjugation became again one of 
associated pairs of verbs formally indicative of aspect. The 
Common Slavonic imperfect meanwhile broke down formally, 
since it was too subtly distinguished from the aorist. It has 
been eliminated in the East and West Slavonic languages 
(except Wendish), and the aorist also has disappeared, since 
it expressed nothing but what the /-participles could supply. 

Thus, in the matter of the perfective/imperfective dis- 
crimination, it is possible to say that both Indo-Eur.opean 
and .the modern Slavonic languages express differences 
of aspects in a formal way by means of pairs of verbs, leaving 
differences of time largely to the syntax of the sentence ; 
but it is clear that Indo-European and Slavonic differ in the 
formal criterion (vowel-mutation/prefixation), and they have 
only achieved their present illusory resemblance by passing 
through stages in which the temporal discrimination was more 
important than the aspectual. 

Rather similar inferences would be drawn from declension. 
Despite its apparent archaism the Slavonic declensional 
system has suffered a complete overhaul. Firstly, the decay 
of case-endings has led to a considerable regrouping of types ; 
secondly, the principle of identifying gender with declension 
has been more and more potent. The latter has worked itself 
out largely in the historical period, but it had already produced 
effects when Old Bulgarian came to be recorded. At no time 
within record has it been possible in Slavonic, as in Indo- 
European, for any declension to have all genders among its 
constituent nouns. The decay of case-endings is mostly 
prehistoric, but it would seem to depend on the reduction 
of nasal u i to u i, and the identification of gender and 
declension on the confusion of extra-short vowels of different 
origin, during the Middle Proto-Slavonic Period. 

The Slavicist's problem is thus defined. During three 
thousand years changes have been occurring in the languages 


he studies while they were yet one. They have involved a 
complete reshuffle of the linguistic material, and so cannot 
be ignored. They have been due to different tendencies 
operating at different times, and it is an error to refer a given 
tendency to a wrong time. These trends also have not been 
uniformly progressive, but, as the consideration of aspects 
shows, have followed a sometimes re-entrant course. The 
Baltic scholar deals with highly conservative material ; but 
the conservatism of Slavonic is misleading. The problem of 
chronology becomes highly important for the Slavicist, and 
yet the whole history of Common Slavonic lies outside the 
historical record. How is he to proceed ? 

There are two possible sources of evidence. Internal 
analysis of the facts of language, and especially of the successive 
palatalizations of velars, produces a relative chronology in 
the form of a string of phenomena, the existence of one set 
of which excludes the simultaneous operation of other 
tendencies. These strings of relatively dated items do not 
always exclude the possibility of another order for some events. 
The emergence of the velar fricative ch is one of the oldest 
facts of the language, but the development of s from it before 
front vowels might have occurred at almost any time. 
Similarly the vowel-sequences worked out by Ljapunov are, 
at points, only conjecturally associable with the sequence of 

On the other hand, external evidence is available from the 
time of Tacitus, so that it is possible to know with whom the 
Slavs were in contact and on what terms. From that date 
the development of German can be followed, and by com- 
parison with German, the history of some Slavonic features. 
Finnish and Baltic evidence is also available. Whether we 
can learn anything of the Slavonic tribes in the centuries 
before Christ is more doubtful. The testimony of Herodotus 
is open to various explanations. 

I. Indo-European distinctions. There is some evidence for 
chronological discrimination in common Indo-European. 


The oblique cases of the plural and dual show phenomena in 
-m- in Germanic and Slavonic, but in -bh- (> -6-) in Sanskrit, 
Iranian, Latin, Celtic, and (to some extent) in Greek. It is 
doubtful whether we can speak of either the -bh- or the -in- 
forms as true flexions, in view of the fact that the Gk. -<f>i(v) 
is a free postposition, like Gk. -Se and -Qe(v). The evidence 
of the several languages is so conflicting that it is not feasible 
to posit separate original forms for each of the three cases, 
but the wider distribution of -bh- would seem to suggest that 
it developed earlier than the flexions in -m- in the imperfectly 
differentiated dialects of the common stock. 

II. Satem. The satew-innovations are the first of a long 
series of palatalizations which have given a characteristic 
outline to the Slavonic speeches. The cewtoi-languages 
would not provide evidence of any differentiation of velars, 
nor is such differentiation more than a transient feature in 
the history of most known languages. However that may 
have been, a series of changes occur in the post-palatals 
*k *g *kh *gh which bring these sounds to the mid palate 
(c s j z etc.) or beyond the palate to the dental region (s z). 
In the subsequent development of these sounds Slavonic 
agrees most closely with Avestan : Slavonic slovo ' fame ', 
zqbu > R. zub ' tooth ', vezetu ' transport ', Avestan sravah 
' word ', zantus ' tribe ', vazaiti * transport '. 

III. Slavonic and Indo-Iranian. The development of IE. 
*s to cerebral s (as a preliminary stage of further evolution) 
under the influence of i u r k is a particular feature of the 
Slavonic and Indo-Iranian groups. It is thus post-Indo- 
European in date. Before 1500 B.C. 

In the above paragraph this comparison is made with, 
so to speak, traditional brevity. If it be elaborated it becomes 
highly complex, as befits such ancient history. Lithuanian 
agrees with Slavonic in some instances (e.g. Lith. virsus 
' top ', CSlav. virchu), and disagrees in others (e.g. the locative 
plural). In Slavonic the evolved forms have extended by 
analogy to words in which i u r k are not involved. In the 


Indo-Iranian group of languages, that of the Ashkun Kafirs 
gives various discrepant results (see G. Morgenstierne, ' The 
Language of the Ashkun Kafirs,' Norsk Tidsskrift for 
Sprogvidenskap, ii (1929), pp. 192-289). In this language 
a normal s is found after u : Kafir dos ' yesterday ', Waigel 
and Kati dus/Ski. dosdm, Waigel tus ' straw ', Kati tyus/Skx. 
tusa. It is palatalized to s after i : Kafir nisi- ' sit down '. 
After original r k the cerebral s is found : Kafir 'asa ' bull ' , 
Kati as9/$kr. rsabha- ; Kafir su * six '/Skr. sas. The effect 
of this is to break up the Indo-Iranian unity upon this point, 
and to raise the possibility that the i u r k rule may have 
operated separately in Slavonic and Indo-Iranian, long 
after contact had been lost. 

The highest common factor is ' cerebral ' (cacuminal) s. 
It is from s that the other values (s and x) derived in prehistoric 
times, as they do historically in the Spanish sequence : Lat. 
saponem, MedSp. xabon, ModSp. jabon ' soap ' (alveolar > 
palatal > velar). There are extant in present-day Spanish 
three varieties of the alveolar sibilant, viz. the normal dorso- 
alveolar s of Andalusia and South America with the tip of 
the tongue resting on the lower teeth and the friction between 
the gums and the upper fore-tongue ; the coronal s with the 
tip of the tongue raised to the upper teeth, and the friction 
between the gums and the upper surface of the tip ; and 
cacuminal (' cerebral ') s, with the tip of the tongue raised to 
or behind the gums, and the friction at the tip or its under 
surface. In the development of Spanish, s was dorso-alveolar 
or normal in Latin, but had become cacuminal s by the 
eighth century and remained such until the mid-sixteenth 
century. After 1550 it relapsed to normal s in Andalusia 
and South America, and in Portugal. Cacuminal s is, in fact, 
a highly unstable sound, with a tendency to develop to the 
palatal s or to relapse to normal s. 

Now, to cause i u r k to modify normal to cacuminal s 
involves so many coincidences of development as virtually to 
eliminate the thesis of chance agreement. The four causes 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. D 


do not constitute a natural phonetic group. The two narrowest 
vowels (i u) might tend to keep the tongue elevated, with 
the tip away from the lower teeth, probably in the coronal 
position. The alveolar vibrant r would keep the tongue-tip 
upon the gums, as the hollow unvibrant r does in English, 
and so give cacuminal s. The velar k involves retraction of 
the whole tongue from the front of the mouth, with the 
possibility of coronal s or cacuminal s. But it is clear that 
at least three separate phonetic causes have converged in the 
i u r k rule ; and such a convergence can hardly be found in 
both Slavonic and Sanskrit fortuitously. They become four 
if we agree with Morgenstierne that u ' velarized ' the original s 
(I am not sure how one velarizes an s ; the velar sibilant is ^), 
w^hen i palatalized it to s. 

This Kafir evidence is strictly of our own day, and has 
no history ; nor is it subject to control. Morgenstierne 
remarks : ' It is not probable that Kaf . us is due to a regressive 
development of 5 > s as s < rs rs remain.' The argunient 
would be convincing only if there were something in common 
between u and r, but, apart from voicing, they have nothing 
in common. It is tempting to suppose that the narrow vowels, 
operating as such, caused cacuminal *is *us, and that when 
*is progressed to is, *us retrogressed to us-. It is natural, 
as we have seen, for cacuminal s to develop or relapse. The 
alveolar r and velar k kept the s cacuminal. Or, alternatively, 
we would have to remember that each phenomenon has its 
own linguistic boundaries, which do not always coincide with 
even the biggest language frontiers. We should then assume 
that when Slavonic, Iranian, and Sanskrit had developed 
cacuminal s as a result of convergent tendencies represented 
lay i u r k, the remote ancestors of the Ashkun Kafirs shared 
in the movement only in respect of r k } and possibly of i. 
The Baltic languages are related to Slavonic, not as originally 
a united speech, but by close parallel development and 
mutual intercourse over the greater part of prehistoric time. 
A discrepancy, such as the Lithuanian hesitations over 


this rule, can be accepted philosophically in Balto- 

IV. Slavonic and Iranian. There seems to be good reason 
to believe that Slavonic remained in contact for some time 
with the Iranian languages after the withdrawal of Sanskrit 
to the south-east. (1) There is a group of very ancient words 
held in common : SI. bogu ' god ', vatra l fire ', socha ' kind 
of plough ', kuru ' cock ', sekyra * axe ', toporu ' axe ', R. 
sobdka ' dog '. While Sanskrit parallels are, for the most 
part, excluded from these words, the Iranian parallels are 
not found only in Scythian, the nearest known Iranian tongue. 
For R. sobdka the parallel is Median spaka (cited in Herodotus, 
i, 110). For some of these words it might be po^ible to argue 
mediate, not immediate, transmission, e.g. Finnish tappara 
between Persian tabar and SI. toporu, but it does not seem 
possible to do so in the case of bogu ' god '. Niederle (Manuel 
de I'antiquite slave, ii, p. 136) cites Skr. bhdgas, OPers. baga, 
Phrygian Zevs Bayaios, Arm. bagin ' temple ' 1 (and might 
have mentioned the obsolete Lith. bagas ' bread ') to conclude 
that these words ' ne sont que des formes diverses de 1'heritage 
commun legue a la branche de satem par Findoeuropeen '. 
That might be true and yet not invalidate the curious semantic 
coincidence of OPers. baga, SI. bogu ' god '. From a common 
meaning ' bread ', the word developed as a religious epithet 
in Phrygian and Sanskrit (' divider of bread ', ' blessed ', 
' rich ', etc., cf. R. bogdtyj), but only in the two languages 
did it oust the older terms for ' god '. (2) There is the further 
coincidence that the Slavonic and Iranian groups have carried 
to the same distance the evolution of the palatalized velars 
and of the aspirate occlusives. (3) There is also the curious 
parallelism in the use of a suffixed article. Meillet has cited 
from the Avesta (Le Slave Commun, p. 388) star9m ydm 
Tistrim ' the star Tistriya ', cf. CS1. *dobra-jego otlca ' of the 
good father ', Lith. gero-jo tevo. In each case the postpositive 

1 An Iranian loanword in Armenian (see Bull. School of Oriental Studies,. 
viii, p. 538). 


article is a weakening of the demonstrative IE. ^jos. 1 In 
Rumanian one may say either tatdlui bun or bunului tatd 
f of the good father ', the suffixing of the article to noun or 
adjective simply depending on which comes first. The Slavonic 
and Baltic usage implies a steady usage of adjective before 

Though Niederle does not consider the special instance of 
SI. bogu, OPers. baga ' god ' to be significant, he has other 
reasons for positing a period of neighbourly development of 
Slavs and Iranians, and he concedes the force of proof to 
the list of Iranian loan-words. 

This, however, gives us a date from external evidence. 
The borrowings are from the common Iranian stock, before 
differentiation had destroyed fairly free intercourse. 2 But 
the appearance of the Medes and Persians along the high- 
lands overlooking Assyria is a well known event of. the 
seventh century before Christ. Their loans to Slavonic 
must have taken place between 1500 and 650 while they were 
still in Russia, and when they gave to the Danube, Dnieper, 
Dniester, and Don names with the Iranian element ddnu 'water '. 
Further, Sachmatov, studying the Iranian loanwords in the 
Finno-Ugrian languages distinguishes between two epochs 
(Vvedenie v kurs Istorii Russkago Jazyka, 1916, i, p. 35), from 
both of which the Slavs were excluded, viz. a common Iranian 
era during which Mordvinian sazor, Votjak suser, Finnish 
sisar * sister ' (cf. Skr. svasar), Mord. azoro ' lord ', Zyrjenian 
ozyr/ozer ' rich ' (cf. Skr. asura), Mord. vergas ' wolf ' (cf. 
Skr. vrkas) were adopted, and a later purely Scythian period 
in which Mord. loman f man ', effleks ' oath ' were taken from 
the Scythian ancestors of Ossetic limdn ' friend ' and ard/drd. 
The conditions for a purely Scythian influence existed when 
Herodotus wrote his account of South Russia in the fifth 

1 It does not appear, however, that the pronoun was ever enclitic in 
Avestan. The parallel is not very convincing. 

2 Median spaka (< Indo-Iranian *su-) implies differentiation within 
Iranian since other languages show ss s ss s under these conditions. Its 
passage into Slavonic must have been ancient, none the less. 


century, and that 19 an additional reason for placing the 
Slavo-Common Iranian period no later than the seventh 
century B.C. 

V. Balto-Slavonic. The Baltic and Slavonic languages have 
so many points in common as to suggest to some students the 
likelihood of an original unity, like that posited for the Indo- 
Iranians. Meillet was especially prominent in denying this 
thesis, which is not at all essential for explaining the facts. 
There are a certain number of things which cannot be reduced 
to a common minimum between them, but even they show 
a striking parallelism. In proportion as the case for unity is 
weakened the case for contiguity is increased. That two 
language-groups should develop on strictly parallel lines 
which do not meet in one starting-point implies a long period 
of common experience, doubtless overlapping the period 
described in the above paragraphs. (1) In vocabulary these 
resemblances are entirely convincing. (See R. Trautmann's 
Baltisch-Slavisches Worterbuch, 1923.) In whole classes of 
common words, where substitution of a new for an old word 
has occurred, Lithuanian and Slavonic concur, as SI. zelezo 
1 iron ', Lith. gelezis, SI. jezero ( lake ', Lith. ezeras, and in 
such cases their correspondence is far closer than that of 
either to outside languages (Gk. 'A^ptov ^a A/cos). These 
coincidences cover the realms of flora and fauna, apiculture, 
agriculture, parts of the body, etc. (2) In other cases the two 
language groups differ only by consistent preference for 
different suffixes, e.g. SI. -dlo, Lith. -Idas for names of instru- 
ments (SI. *ordlo, Lith. drklds ' plough '). In many instances 
the Lithuanian word represents an older stage of the Slavonic 
one. (3) The intonation-system is basically the same in both 
groups. In Lithuanian falling long tones have become rising, 
and rising longs have become falling ; in Slovene and Serbo- 
Croat some qualities have remained unchanged under certain 
conditions, but there has been a number of displacements of 
tone. (4) These languages agree in identifying IE. *o *a 
through a probable *a ; whence *d SI. a, Lith. o 3 *d SI. o, 


Lith. a ; but IE. *e did not fall in witfy a and o as in Indo 
Iranian. The languages are associated in the treatment of 
IE. *k *%h *g *gh (SI. s z/Liih. s z, Lett., OPrus. s z), and 
in the elimination of the aspirated occlusives. (5) They 
agree in declension (notably in identifying the genitive and 
ablative) and in the use of the suffixed article with adjectives. 
(6) They differ widely in conjugation, both as regards the 
aorist and the personal endings ; but they agree in abolishing 
the Indo-European tense-system in general, and the voices 
(the passive is made reflexive in both groups), while both 
have or have had a sigmatic future (only faint traces in 
Old Czech and. Old Bulgarian), and have infinitives and 
participles formed on the same models (infin. in -ti < * -tei, 
participles with additional *-jo/ja- suffixes in oblique cases 
and feminine). There are also some resemblances between 
them in the aspect-mechanism. 

That there was a long period of Baltic and Slavonic com- 
munity is evident from the above considerations ; but the 
difficulty is to say when or where. It is common ground that 
the Lithuanians are not likely to have moved, or moved far. 
It is also agreed that the primitive habitat of the Slavs 
must have lain in a region where there were yew and ivy 
(R. tis, pljusc are pan-Slavonic) but no beeches (R. buk is 
from Germ. Buche, Swed. bok). This gives the parallels 
Osel-Kurland-Kovno-Vilno-Grodno-Kamenec Podolsk-Kisinev 
and Konigsberg-Danube Mouths. But where between these 
lines ? According to Ptolemy (iii, 19) the Baltic was called 
the Slavonic Gulf and Slavs occupied its whole length : 
-Kare'^et Se rrjv HapjJLaTiav eOvr) /zcyiara ol r OveveSai nap 
oAoi> TOV OvcveSiKov Ko\7Tov. Sachmatov argues that since 
the Slavs never lost sight of this sea they continued to use 
the original term (R. more) in its original value. The Baits, 
lying inland, used it generally in the sense of ' lake ' or ' mere ' 
and that only near the Gulf of Riga, so that when the sea 
again came in sight a new word (Lith. jures) was required. 
The Lithuanians were ' Riparians ' (cf. Lat. litus) of the 


upper Dvina and Niemen, while the Slavs occupied at first 
the lower course of those rivers towards the sea. 

The advantage of this theory is that it accounts for the 
severance of the Slavs from both Mediterranean and Black 
Sea culture. They would be shut in to the Baltic area by the 
sedentary Lithuanians, and also by the relative difficulty 
of portage between the Western Dvina and the Dnieper. Here 
they might develop that primitive agricultural life which is 
attested by a large number of ancient words. A weakness of 
the theory is that it has no external support in archaeology 
or in river-names ; but as for the latter only the Berezina 
and Desna are rivers with Slavonic names. If we were to 
rely on the rivers the Slavs would have had no lodging on 

Others have placed the seat of the ' Slavs further south. 
This has the advantage of answering to the first clear historical 
witness that of Tacitus. Some would restrict the Slavs to 
Polesie (a savage region hostile to life) and the northern 
valley of the Dnieper. In such a location it is hard to see how 
any settled ways of life could develop, still less how a great 
people could multiply. Niederle extended the ground to the 
tract from Dnieper to Oder, and then restricted it to the 
quadrilateral of Narew- Vistula-Carpathians-upper Dnieper. 
The site is one which should have tempted its occupants, as 
indeed it did later, to descend the Dnieper in search of warmth 
and food, and it does not seem well suited for contact with 
the Baltic peoples. The testimony of Tacitus is discounted 
by the fact that he described the Slavs as in a state of violent 
agitation under Gothic pressure : quidquid inter Peucinos 
Fennosque silvarum ac montium erigitur latrociniis pererrant 
(Germ. 46). They had suffered German invasions, probably, 
since the time when the Bastarnae (of whom the Peucini 
were a branch) had thrust towards the Black Sea in the third 
and second centuries B.C. It is possible that the German 
name given to them in Tacitus is due to their occupying 
ground formerly held by the Veneti. 


Niederle harnesses to his theory the description of South 
Russia by Herodotus. The northern fringe of the Herodotean 
world is formed of (1) the Neuri on the headwaters of the 
southern Bug, with the Ploughmen Scyths lower down the 
Bug and extending to the Dnieper, (2) the Anthropophagi 
beyond a deserted space and east of the Dniester, (3) the 
MelanchldBni between Donee and Don, (4) the Budini beyond 
the Dnieper. About 570 B.C. the Neuri had wandered into the 
Bug valley from a country infested by snakes. They had 
dislodged the Budini, forcing them to take flight beyond the 
Cannibals and the Black-coats. Now the Cannibals are 
identified with the modern Mordva (Iranian mard ' man ', 
*hvar- ' devour '), and the Black-coats with the Cheremisses, 
both Eastern Finns. Sachmatov (Vvedenie, i, p. 38) says the 
Neuri must have been Western Finns, the ancestors of the 
modern Suomi, Estonians, Vepses and Karelians ; and thus 
interposes a Finnish bar between the Balto-Slavs and the 
Black Sea region in the fifth century B.C. Niederle, however 
(Manuel de I'Antiquite slave, i, p. 174) says : ' il n'est pas 
douteux qu'ils se trouvaient dans la region que nous con- 
siderons comme 1'habitat primitif des Slaves, et plus exacte- 
ment dans la partie orientale de cet habitat : nous pouvons 
done, avec la plus grande vraisemblance, les considerer comme 
Slaves.' The Budini, displaced by the Neuri, are stated to 
have been fair or ruddy, and Niederle claims them on the 
ground that their name is formed with what appears to be 
a Slavonic suffix. He was also disposed to regard as Slavs the 
Ploughman Scyths. Herodotus distinguishes between Scythian 
and the language of the Cannibals and Blackcoats (iv, 18, 20), 
but says nothing of that of the Neuri. Their habits were those 
of the Scyths, save for an annual shape-shifting, when they 
became wolves. This peculiarity suits Finns as well as 

The upshot of this is that we cannot be certain where the 
Slavs were located in the age of Herodotus. The Neuri, if 
not Western Finns, might still not have been Slavs. Were 


the Slavs then so far south it would be a sign that the Balto- 
Slavonic community had dissolved. 

VI. Primitive Slavonic. The first independent feature of 
Slavonic is the development of cerebral *s to the velar fricative 
ch : loc. plur. SI. *bodzechu/IAth. vyruose. This is older than 
the first Slavonic palatalization, since it enters into that 
tendency alongside original *& *g. 

VII. Early Proto-Slavonic. (1) This is marked by the first 
Slavonic palatalization whereby IE. *k *g and Primitive 
Slavonic *ch became palatal 6, z (dz) > later z, and s before 
e i : SI. *vilku voc. sing. *vilce, bogu boze, duchu duse. 

(2) As the pronunciation of *e was probably very open, 
it easily became a by dissimilation from the off-glide of the 
palatal : SI. slysati ( hear ' < *slyseti. This is an entirely 
mechanical change, and it is consequently impossible to say 
whether it happened hard upon the first palatalization or 
after a considerable lapse of time. 

VIII. Middle Proto-Slavonic. (1) This period is marked 
by a number of vowel-shifts which lead up to the second 
Slavonic palatalization. Many of the items cannot readily 
be dated, but it is at least certain that the change of IE. 
*oi *ai to SI. e/i was necessarily antecedent to the subsequent 
modification of the velars before these vowels. (See Ljapunov 
on Kulbakin, in Archiv f. slav. Phil., xxxiii (1912), p. 531.) 

The series of changes is as follows : (i) IE. *on *os *ons 
closed to *un *us *uns, under the influence of n and s : SI. 
*vilkus *vilkuns, cf. Gk. XVKOS *XVKOVS > XVKOVS ', (ii) nasal 
vowels were created : SI. *i *u *u Q/q, e perhaps at first in 
final position, as in Lithuanian with loss of n and also s ; 
(iii) j -\- back vowels gave j -f front vowels : SI. je < *jo, 
ji < *ju < *ju, *ji < *ju < *ju, e.g. SI. koni < *konjus ; 
(iv) SI. y u I < *u u i, by shortening and change of place of 
enunciation from the back to the mixed order, as SI. synu < 
*sunus ; (v) diphthongs became monophthongs : SI. *u 
*ju *ce *i < *ou *eu *oi (*oi *ai) *ei, and these lost their 
length ; (vi) *ce > SI. e and SI. i when final, the former 


under a rising tone, the latter under a falling tone, as SI. 
*vilce *vilci < *vUkoi *vilkol ; (vii) this e became identical 
with SI. e < *e. 

(2) The creation of the imperfect can hardly have been 
later than this period, which is the last to be wholly outside 
the historical record. The attachment of the auxiliary 
*(j)achu < *esom to a bare verbal stem was a process which 
soon after became impossible. All later innovations took 
the form of attaching the auxiliary to an inflected part of the 
verb, usually an infinitive or participle. As the imperfect 
tense took its rise from a decay of the notion of aspect in 
verbs and a temporary ascendancy of the criterion of time, 
it would appear as if a middle date best suits this step. 

The Middle Proto-Slavonic period comes down to the 
Christian era. 

IX. Late Proto-Slavonic. (1) The characteristic mark of 
the period is the second Slavonic palatalization, whereby 
*k *g *ch became dental c (= ts) z ( dz) > z and s (or s) 
in certain circumstances. There are two cases, and they are 
not contemporary. Authorities differ regarding the order, 
which is given by Vondrak thus (Vergl. slav. Grammatik, i, 
pp. 354-5) : (i) after i or i, when the vowel following the velar 
does not forbid : SI. oticl (R. otec) ' father ', ovica ' sheep ' < 
*otiku *ovikd ; (ii) before e/i < *ai *oi : SL.loc. sing. 6026 > 
boze, imper. 2 sing, rlci ( say '. 

At this time a new supply of velars before front vowels 
(e i) was obtained by borrowing from the German, and these 
loanwords show the second palatalization : R. knjaz ' prince ' 
< kuningaz. Now the German words filtered into Slavonic 
as the result of the German migrations in the first centuries 
of our era, and they carried with them certain elements due 
directly or indirectly to Roman civilization. Among these 
was the word penezi ' penny, money '. The second palataliza- 
tion continued to operate until after the conversion of the 
Goths, since SI. *cirky ' church ' < Goth, kirihha (sixth 


(2) There must have been an increase of the grade of 
nasalization (from Jesperson's second to third grade), with 
the result that nasality was incompatible with any but the 
most open vowels (a a). Two nasals only survive in Old 
Bulgarian, and are evidently very open. Two also survived 
in Proto-Polish and in the twelfth century, but in the thirteenth 
they became one (0), and later diverged as two : a [5] and 
e [e]. It would appear, however, that the precise quality 
of these nasals was not the same everywhere. In the ace. 
plur. masculine of jo-stems there is an alternation : South SI. 
otice/West and East SI. otice ; and similarly in the gen. sing, 
of feminine ja-stems : South SI. duse/West and East Slav. 
duse. It would be best explained as due to a variation of 
pronunciation of e as between [e] and [e], the latter being too 
narrow to be maintained against the increasing depression 
of the uvula. All other nasal vowels became denasalized. 
Their absence in the Late Proto-Slavonic period is proved 
by the equivalence o/e = Germ, ung/ing : ON. varingr, 
R. varjdg (ja < e). 

X. Common Slavonic. In the strictest sense Common 
Slavonic cannot be termed a period of the language. It is 
made of deductions from the comparative study of the 
individual languages, and consists of the sum of points of 
departure for each phenomenon. These points so fixed were 
not necessarily contemporary. It seems evident that there 
was a general use of the two nasals throughout the ninth 
century and the first part of the tenth, though there had 
already been established a difference of treatment of SI. *tort 
(South SI. Czech. trot/Pol, trot R. torot). Similarly there are 
several results of SI. *tj *kt *gi and *dj, which imply Common 
Slavonic *i *d (pronounced in the high palate) at a time too 
late to reach any single stable position. 

But though in the strictest sense Common Slavonic is an 
abstraction to embrace a sum of inferences from the concrete 
facts of language, yet the community of. the Slavs was 
materially disrupted in the sixth century as a result of their 


southern migrations, and their contact was shattered by the 
irruption of the Magyars into the basin of the Danube in the 
latter half of the ninth century ( A. D. 860-896). One may 
speak of Common Slavonic as existing in the sixth century, 
and definitely ended in the ninth. 

XI. Proto-Russian, Proto-Polish, Proto-Czech, etc., Old 
Bulgarian. Before the first literary monuments appear 
(generally in the twelfth century) a number of changes take- 
place in the several languages, sometimes individually, and 
sometimes over the whole of an area (such as those that give 
rise to the terms East, West, and South Slavonic). In Old 
Bulgarian, however, the records follow so hard upon the 
period of virtual unity that it suffices to cover this period of 
the development of Bulgarian. The elimination of the nasal 
vowels in Russian and Czech, or the development of a voiced 
velar fricative [y] in South Great Russian and h in Ukrainian, 
West Russian, Czechoslovak and Upper Wendish are features 
which correspond to the individual history of each of these 
tongues. Scandinavian loanwords prove that the nasal vowels 
existed in Russian in the ninth century, and Constantine 
Porphyrogenitus's transcriptions prove that they were 
denasalized by the middle of the tenth century, and that h 
existed at that time in the Kiev region. This period of 
imperfectly recorded development extends until the fourteenth 
century in respect of those features (such as dkane) which 
Russian owes to the ancient dialect of the Vjatici. 

NOTE. The above went into page proof before there reached 
me Mr. George Vernadsky's Ancient Russia (1943) . He considers 
the questions of original speech and habitat to be unhelpful to the 
historian. He establishes as periods of the Iranian organization 
of South Russia : the Cimmerian (1000-700 B.C.), Scythian (700- 
200 B.C.), Sarmatian (200 B.C.-200 A.D.), and treats of the Iranian 
legacy as a whole (pp. 95-100). The cultural common fund of 
Slavonic vocabulary is discussed in the Sarmatian period (pp. 
110-111). Magyar borrowings from Ossetian (Scythian) are dis- 
cussed on p. 244. The Antes are described as Aso-Slavs, i.e. 
Slavs mixed with As, Ant or Os (cf. Ossetian) Aryans of S.W. 
Asia and S. Russia (p. 83). 


By ALAN S. C. Ross 


The subject discussed in the present paper is, primarily, the assignment 
to their Indoeuropean etymons of the congruent sets of Finno-Ugrian 
numerals typified respectively by Hungarian het ' 7 ', Mansi sat ' 7 ', Finnish 
seitseman ' 7 ', Finnish -deksan ' 10 ', Komi and Udmurt das ' 10 ' and 
Finnish sata ' 100 '. Secondarily, from these assignments I draw some 
detailed conclusions as to the influence of the Indoeuropean decimal 
numeration-system on the Finno-Ugrian sextal numeration -system. 

Abbreviations (pp. 45-47). Introduction, and data of the problem 
(pp. 47-52). The Indoeuropean etymons (pp. 52-60) with discussions 
of the Aryan forms of ' 6 ' (pp. 54-57) and an apparent Tocharian paraUel 
to a postulated analogical form (pp. 58-60). Discussion of the history 
of the individual phonemes of the Indoeuropean etymons down the line 
of descent PrlndE -> Ossete (pp. 60-70). Remarks on lautersatz (pp. 70-71). 
Excursuses on two Finno-Ugrian problems the history of the Finno- 
Ugrians- phonemes in Ugrian (pp. 71-73) and the possible masking of 
IndE final -m in Finno-Ugrian (p. 74). The sets of congruent forms 
in detail : Finnish sata, etc., ' 100 ' (pp. 74-75) ; Hungarian het, etc., ' 7 ' 
and Mansi sat ' 7 ' (pp. 75-77) ; Finnish seitseman, etc., ' 7 ' with rejection 
of the theory that some of the Samoyede words for ' 7 ' are cognate with 
Finnish seitseman, etc., ' 7 ' (pp. 78-82) ; Komi and Udmurt das ' 10 ' 
(pp. 82-84) ; Finnish -deksan, etc., ' 10 ' (pp. 84-86). Discussion of the 
other subtractives for ' 8 ' and ' 9 ' in Finno-Ugrian (pp. 86-88). Elimina- 
tion of an implied contradiction (pp. 88-89). Parallels afforded by other, 
non -numeral, Indoeuropean loan-words in Finno-Ugrian (pp. 89-91). 
Conclusions as to the influence of the Indoeuropean decimal numeration- 
system on the Finno-Ugrian sextal numeration-system (pp. 91-93). 


I) Names of languages 

The abbreviations M (Middle), Mn _ (Modern), (Old), Pr (Primitive) 
are used before the names of languages. 

Alb = Albanian ; Ar = Aryan ; Arm = Armenian ; Ash = Ashkun 
Av = Avestic ; Bulg = Bulgarian ; Dam = Dameli ; E = English ; 
Est = Estonian ; F = Finnish ; FU = Finno-Ugrian ; G = German 
(HG = High German) ; Gk = Greek ; Goth = Gothic ; H = Hungarian ; 
I = Iganasan (Tavgi- Samoyede) ; Icel = Icelandic ; Ind Indian f 

1 I should like to express my gratitude to Professor H. W. Bailey for 
his help on many points which have arisen during the present research. 


IndE = Indoeuropean ; Ir = Irish ; Iran = Iranian ; K = Komi (G. 
syrjanisch) ; Kar = Karelian ; Kb = Koibal ; Kh Khanty (G. 
ostjakisch) ; Km = Kamassin ; Kr = Karagass ; Lat = Latin ; Lett 
= Lettish ; Lith = Lithuanian ; Liv = Livonian ; Lp = Lappish ; 
Ma = Mari (G. tscheremissisch) ; Md = Mordvin ; Mn = Mansi (G. 
wogulisch) ; Mt = Motor ; N = Nenets (Yurak-Samoyede) ; Oss = Ossete ; 
Pers Persian ; Pra = Prasun ; Pruss Prussian ; S = Sel'kup (Ostyak- 
Samoyede) ; Skt = Sanskrit ; T = Taigi ; U = Udmurt (G. wotjakisch) ; 
Ugr = Ugrian ; Waig = Waigeli ; Ye = Enets (Yenisei-Samoyede). 

II) Dialects of Finno-Ugrian languages 1 

Lappish. N = Norwegian ; S = Swedish ; K = Kola ; I = Inari. 

Mari. Western dialects : KB = Kozmodemyansk ; J = Yaransk. 

Eastern dialects : U = Urzhum ; C = Tsarevokokshaisk ; 
M - Malmyzh. 2 

Mordvin. E Erz'ja ; M = Moksha. 

Komi. " I = Izma-dial. ; IU = Unter-Izma-dial. ; L = Luza-dial. ; 
Le = Letka-dial. ; Pec ^= PeSora-dial. ; PK = pernajakischer dial, im 
dorfe Durova ; PO = permjakischer dial, im dorfe Parsakova ; S = Sysola- 
dial. ; U = Udora-dial. ; V = Vycegda-dial. ; Vu = Unter-Vycegda-dial." 
(Uotila, p. X). 

Udmurt. " B = bessermanscher dial. ; G = glazovscher . dial. ; J = 
jelabugascher dial. ; M malmyzscher dial. ; MU = malmyz-urzumscher 
dial. ; S = sarapulscher dial. ; U = ufascher dial." (Uotila, p. XI). 

Mansi. Southern group : TJ = Yanychkova ; TC = Chandyri. 

Eastern group : KU = Lower Konda ; KM = Middle Konda ; KO 
= Upper Konda. 

Western group : P = Pelymka ; VS = South Vagilsk ; VN = North 
Vagilsk (including VNK = Kama) ; LU = Lower Loz'va ; LM = Middle 

Northern group : LO = Upper Loz'va ; So = Sosva. 3 

Khanty. " DN = oberdemjanischer dialekt ; DT = unterdemjanischer 
dialekt ; Fil = Fili (am Irtysch) ; K = die dialekte an der Konda 
(gesamtname) ; Vj = Vasjugan-dialekt ; V = Vach-dialekt ; Trj = dialekt 
am Tremjugan ; Ni = Nizjam-dialekt ; Kaz = Kazym-dialekt ; = 
Obdorskischer dialekt " 4 (Karjalainen, p. XV). 5 

1 Much of the philology of Finno-Ugrian is written in German and it has 
become customary to cite the many dialects of the different Finno-Ugrian 
languages by the appropriate German abbreviations. For convenience 
I have followed this practice here, except in the case where I cite the name 
of a dialect in full. 

2 Y. Wichmann, Tscheremissische texte mit worterverzeichnis und gram- 
matikalischem abriss, p. 40 note. 

3 Kannisto, pp. IV-V. 

4 Also J Yugan. 

5 I have not had occasion to abbreviate the dialects of the Samoyede 
languages, with the exception of Knd = Konda, LV = Lower Vasyugan. 


III) Literature 

Brugmann = K. Brugmann, Kurze vergleichende grammatik der indo- 
germanischen sprachen ; BSOS = Bulletin of the School of Oriental Studies ; 
Collinder = B. Collinder, Die worter fur fiinf, sechs und sieben im lappischen, 
Festskrift til Rektor J. Qvigstad (Tromso Museums skrifter, vol. II), pp. 356- 
374 ; Dormer = K.Donner, Samojedische worter verzeichnisse (SUST LXIV) ; 
DP = K. Donner, H. Paasonens ostjakisches worterbuch (Lexica Societatis 
Fenno-Ugricae II) ; Ebert = M. Ebert, Eeallexikon der vorgeschichte ; 
Endzelin = J. Endzelin, Lettische grammatik ; FUF = Finnisch-ugrische. 
forschungen ; Grdr = W. Geiger and E. Kuhn, Grundriss der iranischen 
philologie ; IF = Indogermanische Forschungen ; Jacobsohn = H. Jacobsohn, 
Arier und Ugrofinnen ; JIPNS = Yazyki i pis'mennost' narodov severa ; 
JRAS = Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society ; Kannisto = A. Kannisto, 
Zur geschichte des vokalismus der ersten silbe im wogulischen (SUST XL VI) ; 
Karjalainen = K. F. Karjalainen, Zur ostjakischen lautgeschichte : I. Vber 
den vokalismus der ersten silbe (SUST XXIII) ; KZ = Zeitschrift fur 
vergleichende sprachforschung ; Miller = Ws. Miller, Die sprache der Osseten 
(in Grdr) ; Morgenstierne Afgh = G. Morgenstierne, Report on a linguistic 
mission to Afghanistan ; Morgenstierne Ind = G. Morgenstierne, Report on 
a linguistic mission to North- Western India ; Morgenstierne NTS G. 
Morgenstierne, The language of the Ashkun Kafirs, Norsk tidsskrift for 
sprogvidenskap ii, 192-289 ; NFU A. S. C. Ross, Some remarks on the 
numerals of Finno-Ugrian, TPS 1941, pp. 1-15 ; NyK = Nyelvtudomdnyi 
kozlemenyek ; Orban = G. Orban, A finnugor nyelvek szdmnevei ; Paasonen 
KSz = H. Paasonen, Beitrage zur finnischugrisch-samojedischen laut- 
geschichte, Keleti Szemle xiii, 225-277 ; xiv, 20-74, 249-281 ; xv, 78-134 ; 
xvi, 1-66 ; xvii, 1-111 ; Paasonen s-laute = H. Paasonen, Die finnisch- 
ugrischen s-laute ; Setala = E. N. Setala, Yhteissuomalainen ddnnehistoria ; 
Skold H. Skold, Die ossetischen lehnworter im ungarischen ; SUST 
= Suomalais-ugrilaisen Seuran toimituksia (= Memoires de la Societe 
Finno-ougrienne) ; Szinnyei = J. Szinnyei, Magyar nyelvhasonlitds (7th ed.) ; 
Szinnyei Sprw. J. Szinnyei, Finnisch-ugrische sprachwissenschaft ; 
Toivonen = Y. H. Toivonen, Kleiner beitrag zur geschichte der finnisch- 
ugrischen sibilanten, Liber semisaecularis Societatis Fenno-ugricae (SUST 
LXVII), pp. 377-384 ; TPS = Transactions of the Philological Society ; 
Uotila = T. E. Uotila, Zur geschichte des konsonantismus in den permischen 
sprachen (SUST LXV) ; vW = A.-J. van Windekens, De Indo-Europeesche 
bestanddeelen in de tocharische declinatie (Philologische studien: Teksten en 
verhandelingen Nrs. 21-22) ; Wackernagel = J. Wackernagel, Altindische 
grammatik ; Wichmann = Y. Wichmann, Die tschuwassischen lehnworter 
in den permischen sprachen (SUST XXI) ; WP = A. Walde and J. Pokorny, 
V ergleichendes worterbuch der indogermanischen sprachen. 

Some months ago the Society was kind enough to suggest 
that I should read a paper on Indoeuropean-Finnougrian 
contact problems. For some years before the present war 


I had been working on the problem presented by certain 
Finno-Ugrian numerals of which the Indoeuropean provenance 
was either generally accepted or seemed to me capable of 
demonstration ; I therefore decided to read a paper on these 
numerals. The paper does, I think, conform to the Society's 
suggestion because, as will appear, the special problem involves 
a number of other problems in the rather difficult field of 
Indoeuropean-Finnougrian contacts . 

I had better say at once that the work is, in a sense, not 
finished. But, as I do not think it can be finished for many 
years, it seems proper to present what there is of it now. 
By saying that the work cannot be finished now I do not 
mean, necessarily, that I myself have not time, opportunity, 
or books to finish it, but rather that the study itself has been 
cut off \yyforce majeure. In the years before the war the study 
of Finno-Ugrian philology was prosecuted rather differently 
from that of the better-known philologies, such as Komance. 
To take an example : there was only one man Professor 
Kannisto of Helsinki who was in a position to give an 
opinion on matters concerning Mansi philology and it was 
therefore the practice for a Finno-Ugrian philologist requiring 
information on this subject to write to Professor Kannisto. 
And similarly for most of the Finno-Ugrian languages. 

In September, 1939, I was about three-quarters of the 
way through the voluminous correspondence necessary. Such 
personal contacts have of course been stopped by the war, nor 
do I take other than a gloomy view of the probability of their 
resumption in the years to come. 1 

To turn now to the question of Finno-Ugrian numerals in 
general. After I had read the literature of the subject it was 
comparatively easy to see : (A) what work had already been 
done ; (B) what could' profitably be attempted ; (C) what 
was probably insoluble. As concerned Category B work 
to be attempted it seemed to me that there were two 
problems. First, to draw some general conclusions and 

1 Cf. my note " Studia Moritura ", Nature cli, 699. 


these I put forward in my paper ' Some remarks on the 
numerals of Finno-Ugrian ', Transactions of the Philological 
Society, 1941, pp. 1-15 (cited here as NFU)I will state the 
main result here. I think that, originally, the Finno-Ugrians 
had a sextal system ; they counted 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and then 
no further. This original sextal system was modified by 
contact with the decimal system of Indoeuropean. Since 
there is no trace of formations such as ' two sixes ' for ' twelve ', 
' six plus three ' for ' nine ', etc., it follows that, if this view 
be accepted, it has a corollary : we should expect all the 
higher ' basic numerals ' of Finno-Ugrian (i.e. 7, 8, 9, 10, 
100, 1000) 1 to be either of Indoeuropean provenance or 
suppletives (like MnE score). 2 The work that has been 
done my Category A has* established the congruences 
for the native basic numerals 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 3 and made some 
progress with the suppletives. 4 And much of the work in 
my Category C work that probably cannot be achieved 
would certainly appear to consist in the sorting-out of various 
suppletives. Thus for H tiz ' 10 ' 5 and F kymmenen 1 10 ' 6 
we have no certain etymology, but there is no reason to suppose 
that either is other than a suppletive. 

My second problem arose from a consideration of those 
groups of numerals which, in NFU, I have denoted by 7aa 
(H het), 7 7ab (Mn sat), 7b (F seitsemdn), Wa (F -deksari) in 
'8a (F. kahdeksan) and 9a (F yhdeksan), Wf (KU das) and 
100 (F sata). (Finno-Ugrian forms are more difficult to print 
than Indoeuropean ones and it will be convenient to keep 
to the procedure I used in NFU ; the (italic) number of 
a group means all the congruents in the group.) 

1 NFU p. 3. 

2 See New English Dictionary, s.v. Score, sb. 

3 For the forms see NFU p. 13. 

4 Cf., for instance, Y. Wichmann's article " Ung. husz und verwandtes ", 
SUST lii, 340-8. 

3 Szinnyei, Sprw p. 93 ; Skold p. 36 suggests Iranian provenance, but 
this is very . doubtful. 

6 Orban p. 54. 

7 By (H het) I mean the congruent set typified by H het. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. E 


I shall begin by setting out here the array of forms for 
those groups which I shall require. In some cases (as when 
discussing vocalism) it will be necessary to use the detailed 
forms, in others the standard forms (as used in NFU) will 
suffice. Where both standard and detailed forms are given 
they are separated by a colon. The citation of Finno- 
Ugrian and Samoyede forms presents considerable difficulty 
and it is frequently convenient to take a whole set of con- 
gruents from a single source. In the present article the 
footnote numbers referring to the citation of Finno-Ugrian and 
Samoyede forms are to be understood as referring to the whole 
material as far back as the preceding opening square bracket 
( [ ). In such cases I have naturally altered the abbreviations 
of the source in conformation with my own system and 
translated all meanings into English. 

7aa). [Kh tapbt 1 : [DN tastf V laudf Vj jfluaf Trj Aqp'vf* 
[K tdpdt J Lap9t 3 I H het. 

7ab). [Mn saP : [TJ sat TO s e dt KU soa t KM soat KO 
soat P s^at VN suot VS soat LU soot LO sat So sdn. 5 

76). [Lp : Ter kiccim Kildin kiccem Notozero cihcem Inari 
ciccam ciccem Sompio tjitseme Kuolajarvi kitjieme kitjeme 
tjettjeme Norwegian Lapp cie^d Jukkasjarvi, Kaalasvuoma 
kietja Lule, North Gellivare kietja South Gellivare kietjam 
kietjau Jokkmokk, Arjeplog kietjau Mala cihca cica Vilhelmina 
dice Vefsen ciics ciihcs Offerdal, Undersaker, Harjedalen dice 6 / 
*[F seitseman, seitsen- / Kar seiccemen, seiccemen / Aunus 
seiccei (-erne-) / Veps : Onega seit'simd seit'sime Middle 
siit'$me South seitsmen s$itsm$n / Vatya seitse' seitse / Est : 
North seitse, gen. seitsme South saidze, gen. sditsme; sdidze / 
Liv sels I Md : E sis' em sis'im M sis' dm / Ma : KB sdm U s&m 
M siti-m* /[K:I, Pec, V, VU siz{m U, V, S, L, Le, IU, 
PK sizim PO sizim / U : U, G, B sizim MU, J, M 

1 JIPNS i, 209. 2 Toivonen p. 384. 

3 DP No. 2425. 4 JIPNS i, 177. 

5 Kannisto p. 3. 6 Collinder p. 362. 

7 Y. H. Toivonen, FUF xix, 166. 8 Uotila p. 185. 


8a). [Lp : S kakci kakca kdu w ce co ord. kdu w cate- N gavcegakce 
gafce gauce co ord. gavcad I kavci K kdkce kd%c co ord. kdycant 
kdvcant kdvcat kavcat / F kahdeksan (dialects : kahbeksan 
kahreksan kahleksan kaheksan) / Kar kaheksan / Aunus 
kaheksa / Veps : .Onega kahtsa South kaHesa / Vatya kah$sd / 
Est : North kaheksa South kate_sa / Liv kd'ddks / Md : E 
kavsko M kafskd / Ma : KB attr. kanda'k x s, abs. kdndd'k x s9 ; 
C attr. kanoa's, abs. kannd'sz ; U attr. kanda's, abs. kandd'sd ; 
M attr. kanna's, abs. kannd'si ; J attr. kdndd'rjs, abs. 

9a). [Lp : S akci co ord. ouwcate, akca co ord. auwcate-, 
ouwce N owe ote oufce co ord. ovcacZ I ovci K a&ce a^c ^^c 
co ord. aycant Ovcat avcat / F yhdeksdn (dialects : uhSeksdn 
iihreksdn uhleksdn uheksari) / Kar uheksdn / Aunus uheksd / 
Veps : Onega uhtsa South uHesa / Vatya uhesa / Est : North 
uheksa South uiesti / Liv u'ddks / Md : E m'&se M vehksa / 
Ma : KB attr. dnde'k x s, abs. mde'k x s9 ; C attr. inne's, abs. 
inDe'sz ; U attr. inde's, abs. inde'sS ; M attr. inoe's, abs. 
inDe'S9 ; J attr. nndi'rjs, abs. nndi'rjsd. l 

10/. [KU (Zas (all dialects of both languages). 2 

100. [Lp : N ftf'ti^i co gen. ftWSi S ^'MO^ co gen. 
t's'uote* / F sato co gen. sadan / [Md : E sado M sada / Ma : 
KB sii'fo M Su'So / KU sw / Mn : TJ, TO sd e t KU 5^ P, 
VN, VS, LU set KM sft KO ^ LO s^ So sdu / Kh : K soi 
J sat / H szdz. 4 

It has long been admitted that all these groups save one 
76 (F seitsemdn) are of Indoeuropean provenance. But 
this provenance has not been made precise. The second 
problem referred to above (p. 49) which I discuss in 
the present paper is, first, to make this Indoeuropean 
provenance precise ; second, to support the view not 
generally accepted 5 that Group 76 (F seitsemdn), too, is of 

1 E. N. Setala, FUF xii, 162 ff. 2 Uotila p. 3. 

3 Szinnyei p. 36. 4 Toivonen p. 381. 

5 But suggested, for instance, by Szinnyei Sprw p. 93. 


Indoeuropean provenance, and to discuss this provenance in 
detail. 1 

Before going on to the detailed discussion, I had better 
interpolate here a few brief remarks as to some of the languages 
with which I shall be concerned : 

(i) Following Morgenstierne (Ind, Afgh and NTS), I regard 
the " pattern of descent " of the Aryan languages as : 


Iranian Kafiri Indian 

The Kafiri languages are Kati, Waigeli, Ashkun and 
Prasun. They are distinct from the so-called Dard group 
(Kashmiri, Shina, etc.), but Dameli is a mixture of a Dard 
language with a lost Kafiri one. On the Iranian languages 
see H. W. Bailey, Encyclopaedia of Islam s.v. Persia : II, 
Languages and Dialects ; also A. Christensen, Die Iranier ; 
M. Vasmer, Untersuchungen ilber die altesten wohnsitze der 
Slaven : I. Die Iranier in Sudrussland. 

(ii) Unfortunately there is no comprehensive and accessible 
work on the Samoyedes. There is a very brief note in Ebert 
(s.v. Finno-Ugrier B 25). 

(iii) The genesis of the Ugrian languages probably consisted 
in a spread of language rather than in a spread of people. 2 
Incidentally, this would afford a facile explanation of the 
Ugrian s-changes discussed below (pp. 71-73), similar to that 
often suggested for Grimm's Law. 

I turn now to the detailed discussion. Each of our borrow- 

1 It is accepted too that the Finno-Ugrian words for ' 1000 ' (on the one 
hand H ezer, etc., on the other F tuhat, etc.) are of Indoeuropean provenance. 
I should like to have discussed these words also. But the word thousand 
is so difficult indeed unsolved in Indoeuropean (see WP i, 707), that 
a discussion of the Finno-Ugrian forms (which are certainly late) is hardly 
to be attempted. Z. Gombocz and J. Melich, Magyar etymologiai szotdr 
s.v. ezer give a good account of the first-mentioned group ; cf. also Collinder 
pp. 371-3. 

2 See Suomen Snku i. 167 ff. ; Ebert s.v. Finno-Ugrier. 


ings represents one or more contacts between Indoeuropean 
and Finno-Ugrian and I begin by laying down the a priori 
Indoeuropean limits of these contacts. Having in mind 
what we know of the history and prehistory of the areas 
concerned, we see that the following statement is certainly 
true : The a priori Indoeuropean limits of all the contacts 
are situated on the line of descent Primitive Indoeuropean -> 
Ossete. The terminus ad quern requires no comment. As 
to the terminus a quo. In the Samoyede languages there 
are words, with Finno-Ugrian congruerits, such as Ye bi' 
co gen. bido', etc. l : F vesi co gen. veden H viz, 2 N nim, etc. 3 : 
F nimi H nev,* clearly standing in some relationship to their 
Indoeuropean counterparts water (WP i, 253) and name 
(WP i, 132). This phenomenon can only be explained if 
one of the following hypotheses is true : (i) Indoeuropean 
and Uralian are related ; (ii) there was Indoeuropean influence 
on Primitive Uralian before the division into Samoyede and 
'''Finno-Ugrian took place. 5 Clearly then we cannot put our 
terminus a quo later than Primitive Indoeuropean itself. 

Now as to the Indoeuropean etymons. It will be con- 
venient here to adopt a space-saving notation. When I write 
J, IndE *dekm, I mean " some point or points on the line 
of descent IndE *de'km -> Oss. das ". Then it is certainly 
true that the following statements as to the etymons of all 
the Groups under discussion save 76 (F seitsemdn) will, at 
the least, not conflict with accepted theory : 

(i) The etymon of Groups 7aa (H het) and 7ab (Mn sat) is 
| IndE *septm. 

(ii) The etymon of Groups Wa (F -deksan) and Wf (KU 
das) is J, IndE *dekm. 

(iii) The etymon of Group 100 (F sata) is j IndE *kmto-. 

Paasonen, KSz xiv, 38. 
Szinnyei p. 37. 
Paasonen, KSz xiii, 238. 
Szinnyei p. 32. 

See B. Collinder, Indo-uralisches sprachgut ; also A. S. C. Ross, BSOS 
viii, 227-234. 


Group 76 (F seitsemdn) is more difficult. In the course 
of this article I hope to render the following statements 
plausible : 

(a) The Group is of Indoeuropean provenance. 

(b) j IndE *septm is not the etymon. 

(c) What I may concisely describe as " j IndE *septm 
influenced analogically by ' 6 ' (and perhaps in part also by 
* 8 ') " is the etymon. 

It is clear then that, at the least, we shall need to consider 
the history of the words for ' 6 ', ' 7 ', ' 10 ' and ' 100 ' along 
our line of descent PrlndE -> Oss. 

' 7 ', ' 10 ' and ' 100 ' present no difficulties. The relevant 
forms are : 

IndE *septm (> Lat septem) l : Skt saptd Av hapta Oss awd. 

IndE *dekm (> Lat decem) 2 : Skt ddsa Av dasa Oss das. 

IndE *kmto- (> Lat centum) 3 : Skt satd- Av sata- Oss soda. 

But * 6 ' is very difficult. The following forms are attested 
for IndE : (1) *sueks (> Welsh chwech) ; (2) *seks (> Lat * 
sex) ; (3) *ueks (> Arm vec) ; (4) *uks (OPruss uschts, 
ordinal). 4 The strict phonological development of the forms 
tends to be broken, at any stage, by analogy between the 
developments of the initial su, s, u and the development of 
the final ks. And, for brevity, I call all such assimilation 
" six-assimilation " here. One non- Aryan example will 
suffice : Lith sesl < *sesi < *seksi- (Endzelin 331c). 

The Aryan forms of ' 6 ' could certainly be explained if we 
made three assumptions : 

I). They are all to be ascribed to one of the four following 
IndE types : 

A) *seks 

B) *sueks 

C) *fe!s 

D) *ksueks 

II). Six-assimilation has taken place in Type A. 

1 WP ii, 487. a WP i, 785. 

3 WP i, 786. 4 WP ii, 522-3, where further literature. 


III). Six-assimilation has taken place prior to the change 
s > h in Iranian. 

Ascription to these four IndE types is actually made by 
Wackernagel III, 182. And, as to the genesis of Types C 
and D, it might well be assumed that they are, ultimately, 
only very early instances of six-assimilation. We might in 
fact imagine that *seks, *sueks > *kseks, *ksueks with 
assimilation of the initial to the niedial ; then we might 
imagine a dissimilation to *kseks, *ksueks ; this dissimilation 
would be somewhat similar to the well-known Sanskrit 
dissimilation whereby, ultimately, an IndE ks falls together 
with an IndE ks as ks in Sanskrit (whereas they are kept 
apart in Iranian) ; thus Vedic vaksi Av vasi to Skt vas- 
Av vas- ' to desire ' Gk CKWV : IndE *uek- (WP i, 244-5) ; 
Vedic ksap- Av xsap- i night ' Gk t/je(f>os : IndE *k^sep- 
(WP i, 524-5). l 

It will be convenient to present the argument as if the 
ascription to the above four IndE types were justified and 
then to discuss whether it is or not. Then, assuming the 
ascription to be genuine, we have : 

A) *seks with six-assimilation : 

Indian : *seks > *saHs > *saks > *saks > *sas co saz > 
Skt sat, sad ' 6 ' ; sadasa ' 16 '. For Skt t, d < IndE Us, 
cf. Skt nom. sing, vit, vid ' village ' < IndE *uik-s, gen. sing. 
vis-as < IndE *uik-os. 2 

Iranian : *seks > *saks > *sas > *sas > MPers sas 
MnPers sas. 

B) *sueks : 

(i) without six-assimilation : 

Iranian : *sueks > *suaks >> *xvas > Sogdian 
(Buddhist) wywsw, (Christian) %wsw ; Parachi xl. 
(ii) with six-assimilation : 
Iranian : *sueks > *suaks > *svas > Pashto spaz. 

1 See Wackernagel I, 116 ; E. Hermann, KZ xli, 43 ff. 

2 Cf. Lat uicus Goth weihs (gen. sing, weihsis) WP i, 231. 


C) *kseJis : 

Indian : *kseks > *ksaks > *ksaks > *ksas co ksaz > 
Mind cha. 

Iranian : *kseks > *ksaks > *x$as > Khotanese ksasa 
Oss dxsaz. 

D) *ksueks : 

Iranian : *ksueks > *ksuaks > *xsvas > Av 
Ormuri so. % 

And, to conclude, we have : 

I) The Modern Indian forms descend from types corre- 
sponding to Skt sat co sad or Mind cha. 

II) The Kafiri forms appear to agree with Skt sat co sad ; 
cf. Kati su Ash su Pra vusu. 

See further Wackernagel III, 182 (and the references 
there given) ; R. Pischel, Grammatik der Prakrit- sprachen 
211, 441 ; E. L. Turner, A comparative and etymological 
dictionary of the Nepali language s.v. cha 2 ; Journal of the 
Gypsy Lore Society III. v. 174 ; J. Bloch, La formation de la 
langue marathe 218 ; G. Morgenstierne, An etymological 
vocabulary of Pashto s.v. spaz ; Afgh pp. 41, 45, 47. 

We now have to consider whether the ascription to the 
four Indoeuropean types given above, supported by 
Wackernagel, is genuine or not ; i.e. whether there is any 
evidence for the actual existence of the types in PrlndE. 
And it may be said at once that the chief support for this 
view is found in the Greek dialect form f eWptf - 1 ; this form 
could represent an original type with ks or Us. On the 
other hand it could well be otherwise explained ; thus 
E. Boisacq, Dictionnaire etymologique de la langue grecgue 
(3rd ed.), p. 678, suggests that it may derive from either 
*cre-(TTptf or *afg-vTpi by metathesis. On the whole, 
opinion is against the postulation of types with initial ks 
or ks for ' 6 ' in IndE itself, and the ascription to the four 
IndE types made above cannot be regarded as genuine. 

rj-fi egdorixos . KviBioi (Hesychius ed. M. Schmidt 3 64). 


Moreover the Aryan forms can be explained solely from 
the established IndE types A (*seks) and B (*sueks) if we make 
Assumptions II and III (pp. 54-55) and forgo Assumption I. 
Thus in Iranian Type A *seks with six-assimilation should 
give (i) *sas ; Type B *sueks without six-assimilation should 
give (ii) *xvas. Analogy between (i) *sas and (ii) *xvas might 
well give rise to (iii) *svas. The grouping (i) *sas, (iii) *svas <*> 
(ii) *xvas might produce (iv) *xsas, (v) *xsvas. And in Indian 
the form *saks (ultimately from IndE *seks as set out above) 
might well give *ksaks with a further six-assimilation ; 
hence, ultimately, Skt sat < *saks, Mind cha < *ksaks. And 
certainly the following are possible : 
(i) *sas > MPers sas MnPers sas. 

(ii) *xvas > Sogdian (Buddhist) wywsw, (Christian) ^wsw ; 
Parachi xi. 

(iii) *svas > Pashto spaz. 

(iv) *xsas > Oss dxsdz ; Khotanese ksdsa. 

(v) *xsvas > Av xsvas ; Ormuri so. . 

But other explanations are possible ; thus Pers sas could 
be explained from (iii) *$vas and, according to Morgenstierne, 
op. cit., Pashto spaz from (v) *xsvas. 

It will thus readily be appreciated that the answer to the 
question : by what should we replace j IndE *septm in 
order to indicate that it has been influenced by ' 6 ' ? is 
very difficult. . The pt presents no special difficulty : the 
apparent answer is either kt or kst. And, fortunately, I think 
that we can escape from the difficulty of the initial consonant. 
Finno-Ugrian will not tolerate an initial consonant-group 
and has always selected the second consonant as lautersatz 
in such cases (thus F Ranska ' France '). 1 So, for our purposes, 
xs (or its ancestors at those stages where a consonant-pair 
existed) is equivalent to s (or its ancestor at the appropriate 
stage). It is certainly harder to decide how Finno-Ugrian 
would treat the triplet xsv (or its ancestors at those stages 
where a consonant-triplet existed). But it is clear that only 

1 Szinnyei, Sprw p. 20. 


one component would have been selected. On general grounds 
this component will not have been the first and a glance at 
Group 76 (F seitsemdn) will make it clear that there can be 
no question of the v-component having been selected in this 
case. Therefore, there only remains the middle, s-component. 
Such a selection would certainly be improbable ; in the case 
of triplets the last component seems to be the normal selection ; 
cf. F ranta : Olcel strgnd. l It seems then that, if a form of 
1 1 ' with initial corresponding to either Iranian s or xs or 
xsv of ' 6 ' is the etymon of Group 76 (F seitsemdn), we shall 
be justified in considering only the first of these three 
possibilities. And we must therefore consider j IndE 
*sektm, *sekstm, *sektm, *sekstm (where s denotes the corre- 
spondent of Skt s of sat and s of Pers sets at the 
appropriate stage) as the proper replacements of j IndE 
*septm to indicate that the latter has been influenced 
by ' 6 '. 

Before leaving these analogical influencings of J IndE 
*septm, I must point out that the forms with kt, mentioned 
above, can -be considered as of dual generation. For the kt 
could well be due, not only to the influence of the k of *seks, 
but also to that of the kt of *okto(u (> Lat octo Skt astdu) ' 8 '. 2 
Analogies between numerals of the type postulated here are, 
"of course, quite common. 3 In NFU I mentioned Elean 
OTTTW ' 8 ', clearly a mixture of eVra ' 7 ' and OKTW ' S '. 4 
In the language usually known as " Tocharian B ", 5 there 

1 E. N. Setala, Bibliographisches verzeichnis der in der liter atur behandelten 
dlteren germanischen bestandteile in den ostseefinnischen sprachen p. 94. 

2 WP i, 172-3. 

3 A sufficiency of examples will be afforded by W. van Helten's classic 
article " Zum germanischen zahlwort ", IF xviii, 84-126. 

4 C. B. Buck, Introduction to the study of the Greek dialects, 114.8. 

6 Cf. H. W. Bailey " Ttaugara ", BSOS viii, 883-917; P. Pelliot, "A 
propos du 'tokharien'," T'oung Pao xxxii, 259-284; E. Sieg, "Und 
dennoch ' tocharisch '," Sitz.b. Preuss. Akad. Wiss., 1937, xvii, 130-139 ; 
O. Haloun, "Zur Ue-tsi-Frage," Zeits. Deutsch. Morgenl. Gesells. 91, 243- 
318 ; W. B. Henning, " Argi and the ' Tokharians '," BSOS ix, 545-571. 


is present an analogical form of ' 7 ' rather similar to that 
postulated above. The Tocharian forms are l : 

B : [skas ' 6 ' 2 ; [sukt ' 7 ' 3 ([suktomte ' 7th ', suktoinka 
"iO'*)-[okt '8'. 5 

A : [sdk ' 6 ' ; spat ' 7 ' (sdptakoni ' 7 days ', saptant 
' 7th ', saptuk ' 70 ') ; otoW ' 8 ' (oktapuklyi ' 8 years '). 6 

As to the sound-changes involved : 

1) IndE s > s with palatalization before e hence initially 
in *seks, *septm ; cf. B ser A sar Skt svasar- ' sister ' (WP ii, 
533-4) ; otherwise IndE s > s hence finally in *seks ; 
cf. A sal Lat salio ' to leap ' (WP ii, 505). 7 

2) After the period of this palatalization, IndE e > a, 
a in *seks, *septm ; cf. B yakwe- Lat equus ' horse ' (WP i, 
113) ; B paccane A paccdm ' breasts ' Lat pectus (WP ii, 17). 8 

3) IndE k > kin *seks, *oktou ; cf. B kdnte A kdnt 
Lat centum ' 100 ' (WP i, 786). 9 

4) IndE p remains in *septm (vW 105). 

5) IndE t remains in *septm, *oktou (vW 110). 

6) IndE m > a and is sometimes lost thus A spat l 7 ' 
but sdptakoni ' 7 days ' ; cf. cka-tampe (tampe ' power ') 
but cdk ' 10 ' Lat decem (p. 54). 10 ' 

7) IndE o > o in *oktou ; cf. B on-olme ' human being ' 
Gk oAo? (WP ii, 510-12). 11 

8) Dissimilatory loss of final s in A sdk < *sdks (vW 150). 

9) " Metathesis " in B skas < *saks (beside A sdk < *sdks) ; 
A spat (beside sdptakoni, saptant, saptuk) ; cf. [A spdm- 

1 The texts of Tocharian B are not fully published ; I adopt a method 
of giving references identical with the one I use for Finno-Ugrian forms 
(p. 50). 

2 vW 22. 

3 0. Schrader and A. Nehring, Eeallexikon der indogermanischen alter- 
tumskunde s.v. Tocharer 4. 

4 van Windekens, letter of 10/3/39. 

5 vW 33. 6 vW 21. 7 vW 87-8. 
8 vW 39-40. 9 vW 117. 10 vW 67. 

11 vW 33. 


B spdne spane ' sleep ' x < IndE *suepno- (: Skt svdpna- OE 
swefn ' sleep, dream ' 2 ). 3 

10) a in A okdt is a svarabhakti vowel ; cf. A kukdl ' wagon ' 
Gk KVK\OS Skt cakrd- ' wheel ' (WP i, 515). 4 

It is thus clear that the kt of B sukt, suktomte, suktoinka 
cannot represent the pt of IndE *septm phonologically ; it 
must therefore be due to analogy with the k of *saks (> A sak), 
*saks (> B skas) and the kt of okt. The u is completely 

Next we must trace briefly the history of each of the 
phonemes of our " arrowed " forms down the line of descent 
PrlndE -+ Ossete. 
The phonemes and phoneme-groups concerned are as follows : 

(1) e in *dekm, *septm, *sektm, *sektm, *sekstm, *sekstm. 

(2) o in *Jcmto-. 

(3) m medial in *kmto-. 

^final in *dekm, *septm, *sektm, *sektm, *sekstm, 

(4) t in *kmtd-. 

(5) d in *dffim. 

(6) pt in *septm. 

(7) s in *septm, *sektm, *sekstm. 

(8) s in *sektm } *sekstm. 

(9) k initial in *kmto-. 

medial in *dekm. 

(10) kt in *sektm, *sektm. 

(11) kst in *sekstm, *sekstm. 

It will be convenient to discuss the changes operating on 
these phonemes and phoneme-groups under the following 
heads : 
A) Nos. 1-7. 

I) Primitive Indoeuropean to Primitive Aryan. 

1 vW 22. 2 WP ii, 523. 

3 This " metathesis " is not of the ordinary kind ; see vW 21. 

4 vW 21. 


II) Primitive Aryan to Old Iranian. 
Ill) Old Iranian to Ossete. 

B) Nos. 8-11. 

I) Primitive Indoeuropean to Old Iranian. 
II) Old Iranian to Ossete. 


1) and 2). IndE e, 6 > PrAr a 1 : IndE *ekuo- (> OLat 
equos) > Skt dsva- OPers aspa- ' horse ' (WP i, 113). Later 
on, I shall postulate a stage intermediate between the e of 
Indoeuropean and the d of Aryan ; there is clearly no reason 
against this ; I shall denote this stage by d (a sufficient 
indication of its probable quality). 

3). IndE m (medial and final) > PrAr d 2 : IndE *gVmti- 
(> Goth ga-qumps) > Skt gdti- ' course ' Av aiwi-gati- 
' beginning ' (WP i, 675-6). 

4), 5), 6) and 7). IndE medial t, initial d, medial pt, 
initial s remain in PrAr 3 : IndE *eti (> Gk en) > Skt dti 
Av aiti- ' over ' (WP i, 43-4) ; IndE *do- (cf. Lat donum) 
Skt ddddti Av dadditi ' to give ' (WP i, 814) ; IndE *nepti- 
(> Lat neptis) Skt napti Av napti- ' granddaughter ' 
(WP ii, 329-30) ; IndE *sed- (cf. Lat sedeo) : Skt sddayati 
' to place ' (WP ii, 483-6). 


1-2), 3), 4) and 5). PrAr d, medial t, initial d remain in 
Olran. 4 

6). PrAr medial pt > Olran ft. 5 This remains in Persian, 6 
but generally undergoes further changes elsewhere in Iranian. 
Thus Olran ft > Av pt 7 ; in Pashto, Olran ft > vd (and 

1 Brugmann 92, 104. 2 Brugmann 188.1. 

3 Brugmann 224.1, 3 ; 217.1 ; 277. 

4 Grdr I. 77.5, 15. 5 Grdr I. 4. 6 Grdr II. 279. 
7 H. Reichelt, Awestisches elementarbuch 45. 


avd > od, uvd > iid), 1 in the Pamir dialects, Olran ft > wd 2 ; 
in the Caspian dialects the/ is lost 3 ; of the Central dialects, 
some preserve the ft, others lose the /. 4 (On the Ossete 
development, see below, p. 63.) Thus : later Av p.part. 
x v apto ' fallen asleep ' < *suepto- ; MnPers p.part. xuftan 
1 fallen asleep ', pret. xuftam ' slept ' ; Pashto pres.part. 
uda ' sleeping ' ( < *hufta-) Sarikoli xuwdam Shugni sawdam 
(= MnPers xuftam) Mazandarani xut- (= MnPers xuft-) 
Gabri xoftmun ' to sleep ' Vonishun pret. xuft Zafre pret. 
voft Naymi he-voftend ' they slept ' Kohrud xut Keshe xut 
(= MnPers xuftan) cf. Skt suptd- < *supto- to Lat sopio 
Olcel sofa (WP ii, 523-4). 

7). PrAr initial s > Olran h 5 : Skt sddayati ' to place * 
(see above) : Av had- ' to place oneself '. 


1), 2) and 3). The Ossete developments of Olran a present 
a problem of some difficulty. Professor Bailey is preparing 
a note on the subject. Here then it will suffice to give his 
views on the points relevant to the present paper : 

(i) Digor das Iron das < Olran *dasa shows change a > a 
in an open syllable and loss of final vowel in both dialects ; 
cf. Digor fad Iron fad ' footstep ' = Av pada- Skt padd- 
' track ' Gk TT&OV (WP ii, 24). 

(ii) Digor awd Iron awd < Olran *hafta show change 
a > a (lengthening in a closed syllable) > a and loss of 
final vowel in both dialects ; cf. Digor dary Iron dary < 
*dargd- (> OPers darga- Av dawga-) : Skt dirghd- OBulg 
dhg'b ' long ' (WP i, 812-13). 

(iii) Digor sada Iron sdda probably derive from the form 
of the nom. ace. dual, *satdi (cf. Skt dve sate ' 200 '). The 
Ossete development of the medial vowel would then be the 
same as that in Digor das Iron das ; for the development of 
the final cf. Digor duva Iron diva ' 2 ' < *duvai (= Skt dve). 

1 Grdr V. 5.5. 2 Grdr VIII. 26. 3 Grdr VIII. 110.2. 
4 Grdr VIII. 168.2. 5 Grdr I. 42. 


It is clear that the chronology of the loss of the final vowel 
in Ossete is of interest in the present context Group 10/ 
(KU das) has no final vowel. Skold pp. 50, 74 ff., considers 
that the Alan loan-words of Hungarian derive from Iron 
forms in which the final vowel had already been lost ; thus 
H tolgy : Iron tulj Digor tolja ' oak ' (Skold p. 36). ' And it 
certainly seems possible that Hungarian preserved an Alan 
final vowel when it was encountered ; cf. H eszte ' year ' : 
Iron dzta pi. x of az ' year ' (: Digor anz). 2 Skold further 
considers that the Hungarian loan-words were taken over in 
the eighth century A.D. But it must be admitted that Skold's 
views as a whole are open to criticism ; see, particularly, 
G. Schmidt, FUF, Anzeiger xviii, 84-113 ; H. Skold, FUF, 
Anzeiger xix, 1-12 ; G. Schmidt, FUF, Anzeiger xix, 13-35. 

4). Olran medial t > Oss d 3 ; cf. Iron vad Digor vada 
' storm ' = Av vdta- Skt vdtd- ' wind ' (WP i, 221). 

5). Olran initial d remains in Ossete : Oss dary ' long ' 

6). Olran medial ft > Oss wd 4 : Oss tawd ' hot ' (and 
p.part. tawd to tawin ' to heat ') = p.part. Av tapta- Skt 
taptd-, cf. Skt tdpati ' to give out heat ' Lat tepeo (WP i, 

7). Before vowels other than i, u, u (and ai, au) Olran h 
is lost initially in Ossete 5 : Oss dm = Av ham- Skt sdm- 
OBulg sa- (WP ii, 489-490). 


8). s ; the points involved here have been sufficiently 
dealt with above (pp. 54-57). 

9) and 10). The history of k and kt is one of the classic 

1 Professor Bailey is dealing with the question of the origin of the final 
vowel in the Ossete plural suffix so I need say nothing further here. 

2 Skold p. 19. 

3 Miller 32.2. 

4 Miller 32.2, 39.1. 

5 Miller S 44L 


problems of Indoeuropean philology. In Aryan k has a general 
development and a special development in certain positions ; 
one of these special positions is before t. 

9) The general development of k 

IndE k appears as s in Skt 1 and as s in Olran. 2 The Kafiri 
development is of interest and has been discussed by 
Morgenstierne Afgh pp. 56 ff. ; Ind pp. 60, 66 ; NTS 
pp. 195 ff. 3 Kati and Waigeli have ts and s ; Ashkun has 
is, s and s ; Prasun has ts (z between vowels) and s ; there 
are examples of ts in Dameli. Thus : Kati duts Waig dos 
Ash dus Pra kze ' 10 ' (: Pra tspu-lts ' 14 ') : Skt dasd ; Waig 
tsun Dam tsund : Skt gen. sing, sunah Av gen. sing, suno : 
Lat canis (WP i, 465-6) ; Kati saru Waig soro Ash sard 
Pra sire Skt sarad- Av sar9d- ' year ' Dutch hal ( frozen 
ground ' (WP i, 429-430) ; Kati tsul Waig tson Ash tsun 
Skt sunya- ' empty ' : Lat cauus (WP i, 365 ff.) ; Waig 
sel Ash sil, sal Skt salya- ' spear-point ' : Gk KfjXov (WP i, 
431-2). The z of Prasun (as in kze ' 10 ') is clearly developed 
from ts intervocalically 4 ; the s of Ashkun (as in soro ' autumn ') 
is ambiguous it may derive from an earlier ts or an earlier s. 5 
The relationship between the two remaining phonemes of 
Kafiri, ts and s, is to some extent obscure. Many Kafiri 
words with s are evidently Indian loan-words ; thus 
Morgenstierne Ind p. 66 tentatively explains all the Prasun 
examples of s in this way. In his paper " Die sprachliche 
stellung der Kafir-sprachen ", 6 H. Skold would explain all 
the s-forms as of Indian provenance, regarding ts as the sole 
true Kafiri development of IndE k. But Morgenstierne 
NTS pp. 195 ff. shows that this view cannot be maintained. 

1 Wackernagel I. 198-201. 

2 Grdr I. 276.1, 29. 

3 Of. also R. L. Turner, TPS 1931-2, p. 15 ; JEAS 1932, pp. 174-5. 

4 Morgenstierne, Ind p. 66. 

5 See Morgenstierne, NTS pp. 194, 196. 

6 Wissenschaftliche bericht uber den deutschen orientalistentag, Hamburg, 
28 SepL-2 Okt. 1926, p. 45. 


He considers, Afgh p. 58, that both ts and s derive from an 
earlier sound, phonetically something like ts a sound which 
it will be convenient to denote here by c. Having in mind 
the difference in accentuation between Kati sdi ' head ' and 
vutsdr' ' pillow ' (: Skt siras-), Morgenstierne further suggests 
that the alternation ts oo s may be due to some kind of 

I must next consider the representation of IndE k in the 
other Indoeuropean languages. As is well known, IndE k 
appears as (or is developed from) a pure velar in the centum- 
languages x ; thus Lat cam's : Skt gen. sing, sunah with the 
same initial phoneme as Lat cingo : Skt kdnd ' girdle ' 
(WP i, 400-1). 

In Slavonic IndE k appears as s as it does in Old Prussian 
and Lettish ; but Lithuanian has s 2 ; thus OBulg sndbce 
OPruss siras Lett sirds : Lith sirdis ' heart ' to Lat gen. sing. 
cordis (WP i, 423). There is no reason to question the accepted 
view 3 that the Primitive Balto-Slavonic phoneme was s, 
which remained in Lithuanian but became s elsewhere. 

In Armenian IndE k appears as s 4 ; thus Arm sirt ' heart '. 

The position in Albanian is difficult and to attempt any 
real discussion of it would be beyond the scope of the present 
paper. It will suffice to say that IndE k appears both as 6 
and s 5 ; thus Alb 6om { to say ' : Skt samsati ' to recite ' 
Lat censeo (WP i, 403) ; Alb vis ' place ' : Lith vies-pats 
' gentleman ' Lat uicus (WP i, 231). But, at the time when 
the Illyrians were in contact with the Romans and the Greeks, 
it seems probable that Illyrian had some such sound as I 
as the primary representative of IndE k ; hence forms such 

1 A. Meillet, Introduction d I 'etude comparative des langues indo-europeennes 
pp. 65-7. 

2 W. Vondrak, Vergleichende slavische grammatik i, 329 ; R. Trautmann, 
Die altpreussischen sprachdenkmdler 72 ; Endzelin 746. 

3 So, for instance, Brugmann 243. 

4 A. Meillet, Esquisse d'une grammaire comparee de Varmenien classique, 
p. 30. 

5 Pekmezi, Grammatik der albanesischen sprache p. 28. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. F 


as Saso, Sasaei : OPruss sasins Welsh ceinach ' hare ' (WP i, 
357-8) and ZLppa : Arm ser ' race ' Gk Koprj (WP i, 408). 
But, in conclusion, it should be emphasized that the Illyrian 
evidence does not attest any representation of IndE k other 
than a spirantic one. 1 

In Thracian matters are even harder. The very complex 
state of affairs arising is due to two main causes : first, the 
obscurities of Thracian orthography ; second, the fact that 
there is apparently confusion between the Thracian repre- 
sentation of an Indoeuropean palatal and that of an Indo- 
european pure or labio-velar before a front vowel ; apparently, 
either a stop-like or a spirant-like orthographic representation 
can appear in either case. Thus, on the one hand, poaorvv 
' wooden tower ', cf. Oss masug ' tower ' ; UVKT] also Peuci 
Peuceni Peucini : Gk Treu/cT? OPruss peuse ' fir ' (WP ii, 15) ; 
'Prjcros beside 'Pal^os further the related place-name 
Resiston, 'Paifearos : Skt rajan- Lat rex (WP ii, 362 ff.) 
with spirant and stop representing the Indoeuropean palatal ; 
on the other hand, Germisara Zepfjui^epa : Skt gharmd- 
'hot' MnE warm (WP i, 687-9) with spirant and stop 
representing the Indoeuropean labiovelar. Clearly the matter 
cannot be discussed in detail here ; the reader may be referred 
to the very detailed treatment of the problem by N. Jokl 
in Ebert (s.v. ThraJcer). For the purposes of the present 
paper the point of interest is that there is in Thracian a 
representation of the Indoeuropean palatals which is, in 
part at least, not of a spirantic character and may well be 
of an affricate character (like that of Kafiri ts). 

In Phrygian IndE k appears as s ; thus cre/zou (v = OBulg 
dat. sing. masc. neut. semu (cf. Lith sis Lat citrd). 2 But it has 
been suggested that Old Phrygian orvfoi ferei ' in the 8th 

1 See H. Pedersen's classic article " Die gutturale im albanesischen ", 
KZ xxxvi, 277-340 ; further N. Jokl, " Ein beitrag zur lehre von der alb. 
vertretung der idg. labiovelare," Melanges linguistiques offerts a M. Holger 
Pedersen (Acta Jutlandica IX.i), pp. 127-61. (Also B. F. C. Atkinson, 
TP8 1931-2, pp. 7-10.) 

2 WP i, 453. 


year ' (: IndE *oktuwoi, cf. Lat octduus 1 ) can only be explained 
if the assimilation took place when the representative of 
IndE k was a sound similar to that postulated above for 
Thracian. 2 

It seems then that we have three presentations of IndE 
pure velar, affricate and spirant. In view of the centum- 
development there seems no adequate reason for rejecting 
the classical view 3 that the phoneme was originally a palatal. 
The spirant-presentation is predominant in the safew-languages 
and an affricate presentation seems to be attested in Thraco- 
Phrygian and Kafiri. The three presentations fall into place 
if we imagine some such development as the following. 
IndE k was originally a palatal ; in the cewtoi-languages it 
fell with the pure velars. In the satew-languages it first 
became some sort of affricate (in my notation, c) ; this stage 
or something similar to it is the origin of the Thraco-Phrygian 
and Kafiri phonemes. Elsewhere in the safew-languages this c 
developed into a spirant. Thus we may adequately describe 
the early Aryan development of the phoneme by means of 
the following pattern of descent : 


I . 

I I . 

centum -k satom-c 


Iranian s Indian 3 Kafiri developments 

In concluding this section it may be noted that in the 
above pattern of descent the Indian and Iranian develop- 
ments stand in contradistinction to that of Kafiri. This view 
of the matter does not conflict with Morgenstierne's con- 
clusion (accepted here p. 52) that, in general, Indian and 

1 WP i, 173. 

2 F. Solmsen, KZ xxxiv ; 50 ff, 61 ; Ebert s.v. Phryger A 2. 

3 Brugmann pp. 157 ff. ; Meillet, loc. cit. 


Kafiri stand in contradistinction to Iranian. I have already 
referred to a somewhat similar state of affairs in Balto- 
Slavonic, where the s of Lithuanian stands in contradistinction 
to the s of Slavonic and also to that of Old Prussian and 
Lettish. In both cases it is merely a question of the survival 
of an ancient feature. 

10) The special development of k in the group kt 

In Sanskrit the group appears as st ; cerebralization of the 
representative of IndE k has taken place. l Old Iranian has st ; 
$ in this position has not gone on to s. 2 Kafiri seems not to 
be markedly divergent from Indian on this point. Thus 
Skt dstdu Av asta Kati (v)ust Ash ost : Lat octo ' 8 ' (WP 
i, 172-3). 

Summarizing, it seems that the lines of descent of k and kt 
from PrlndE to lOran are : 

k> c> $> s 
kt > ct > U > st. 

11). IndE kst. There are two ways of attacking the 
problem presented by the development of this phoneme- 
group in Aryan. The first is to investigate the development 
of ks and " add " it to that of t ; the second, to take cases 
in Aryan where kst is thought to have been present and 
ascertain the Aryan representations actually found. Here 
I shall adopt the second approach and I hope that it is 
legitimate to do so. I shall thus avoid the complications of 
the first method which involve the history of ks, one of the 
most difficult and obscure sections of the phonology of the 

Above, I have given *sekstm, *sekstm as forms due to 
analogy between *septm and *seks or *seks. Theoretically 
this seems reasonable enough. There is, however, considerable 
doubt as to whether the group kst could exist in PrlndE. 

1 Wackernagel I. 145, 202. 

2 Grdr I. 276.3, 45. 


And it is extremely difficult to obtain a control ; if we imagine, 
for instance, that Jest could not exist but appeared phono- 
logically as kt, then it is also possible to imagine that this kt 
changed back to kst under the influence of a suitable analogy, 
if some later linguistic stage admitted the group kst. Thus 
we may imagine that, phonologically, the ordinal to *seks 
was *sekto- but that analogy with the cardinal may have 
reinstated the form *seksto-. In the actual languages forms 
of both types are recorded ; thus, on the one hand (with 
apparent loss of s) Gk eV rov < *eks tou (WP i, 116), Gk 
TeKfjiajp < *TK(jfjiojp < ^'eksmor (WP i, 510-11), Gk eWo? 
OHG sehto beside Lat sextus OHG sehsto. l It is, of course, 
easy to understand how an aphonological s could be 
reintroduced into kt to give kst by analogy, but the converse 
process hardly seems possible. In all language-groups, 
therefore, it seems correct to assume kt as the parent in all 
cases where we might be led to expect kst unless there is 
evidence from that language-group to the contrary. 

Examples are, naturally, rather hard to find. But Skt 
3 sing. pres. ind. caste ( < IndE ^k^ekstai) beside 3 pi. caksate 
( < IndE *k^eksntai) ' to seem, see ' and, similarly, Av caste 
beside casaite ' to teach ' (this latter form with the normal 
Iranian representation of ks as s 2 thus later Av mosu 
' immediately ' Lat mox 3 ) to Gk reV^p (WP i, 510-11) 
seems to show that, in Aryan, there is no reason to assume 
that kst is treated otherwise than as if it had been kt. Thus 
our forms | IndE *sekstm, j IndE *sekstm are to be regarded 
as " coalescing " with J, IndE *sektm, | IndE *sektm. 

1 See further H. Osthoff and K. Brugmann, Morphologische untersuchungen 
auf dem gebiete der indogermanischen sprachen iv, 329 note ; H. Hirt, 
Indogermanische grammatik I, 337.2 ; W. Vondrak, Vergleichende slavische 
grammatik i, 369 ; H. Pedersen, KZ xxxvi, 291 ; K. Brugmann, Griechische 
grammatik 114 ; H. Hirt, Handbuch der griechischen laut- und formenlehre 
199.3 ; F. Stolz and J. H. Schmalz, Lateinische grammatik (5th ed.) 
146 ; C. Juret, Memoires de la Societe de Linguistique de Paris xx, 135-9 ; 
C. D. Buck, A grammar of Oscan and Umbrian 145.1. 

2 Grdr I. 34. 3 WP ii, 303-4. 



8). s. The only point that concerns us here is that Olran 
x$ gives Ossete xs and develops a prosthetic vowel ; thus 
Oss axsaw Av xsap- Skt ksdp ' night ' (Miller 3.5, 33.8). 

9). Olran s, both initial and medial, remains in Ossete l ; 
thus Oss surx, sirx Av suxro MnPers surx Skt sukrd- ' red ' ; 
Digor dwdesun Iron dwdisin Skt disdti ' to show ' : Lat dico 
(WP i, 776). 

10). Olran st becomes st in Ossete 2 ; thus ast ' 8 * Av asta 
(see p. 58). 

I have now sufficiently discussed the Indoeuropean side 
of the problem. But, in conclusion, I wish to make two 

Later, I shall frequently be dealing with problems of 
lautersatz and the distinction between sound and symbol is 
particularly important in studies of this kind. The written 
symbols of phonemes are unhypothetical quantities only in 
the case of modern languages where the phonetic character 
of the phonemes can be directly observed. Thus, taking an 
example from English, we have the series MnE gold < OE 
gold < IndE *hUd- (WP i, 624) ; the initial written symbol 
is unhypothetical in the MnE word (g =[g]), hypothetical 
in the OE word (g = [g] or [y] ?), 3 still more uncertain in 
the case of the IndE word. The standard written symbols 
for the phonemes of PrFU and PrlndE may easily give rise 
to confusion. Thus in Indoeuropean philology the symbols 
^ and s can be used for the same phoneme 4 .whereas in Finno- 
Ugrian they represent different phonemes (see p. 72). 
(It would of course be fallacious to suppose that either PrFU 
^ or ^ would be an especially good lautersatz for Aryan s.) 

1 Miller 33.2. 

2 Miller 33.9. 

3 K. D. Biilbring, Altenglisches dementarbuch 486-7. 

4 Thus Skt IT is transliterated s' by Brugmann and s by Wackernagel. 


Lautersatz problems, if the lautersatz is recent, can some- 
times be assisted by reference to the modern languages, where 
we know the phonetic character of the phonemes. In our 
case this is not so ; for instance, it is obvious that the Ossete 
phonemes are too recent for any argument to be based on 
their phonetic character. 

I turn now to the Finno-Ugrian side of the matter and, by 
way of preface, two points must be discussed. 

I) The s-sounds of Finno-Ugrian 

The classical theory is that expounded by H. Paasonen in 
Diefinnisch-ugrischen s-laute (SUST xli). It may be summarized 
as follows. There is in Mordvin and in the two Permian 
languages, Komi and Udmurt, a distinction between an 
unpalatalized s and a palatalized s. To the unpalatalized s 
of these languages there corresponds in general I t t i in the 
Khanty dialects, t in Mansi, s in Lappish ; in Hungarian the 
phoneme vanishes. Whereas to the palatalized s of Mordvin, 
Komi and Udmurt there corresponds in general s in Khanty, 
s or s in the Mansi dialects, 6 in Lappish, sz in Hungarian. 
In Baltic Fennic and Mari the two phonemes are not distinct 
for both Md K U s and Md K U s appear as s in Finnish 
and s in Mari. Thus, on the one hand, [Md sel'/K s$l / U sul : 
Kh 161, AOA, tdt, idl I Mn tdl / Lp : S salla N salld K sail /Hoi: 
F syli I Ma sdl, sulo, stil'o * fathom J1 with Md K U 
unpalatalized s ; and, on the other hand, [Md seVm'e seVm's / 
K sin / U sim, sin : Kh sem, sem / Mn sam, sam / Lp : S 
t's'al'me N t's'afbmi K t's'alm, t's'alme/~H. szem: F silmd / 
Ma sin d za, sin d za ' eye ' 2 with Md K U palatalized s. It is 
therefore clear that we are dealing with two phonemes, distinct 
in PrFU, which have fallen together in Baltic Fennic and 
Mari and have been kept apart elsewhere ; these two 
phonemes are usually denoted by PrFU s (> Md K U s) 
and PrFU s (> Md K U s). 

1 Szinnyei p. 26. 2 Szhmyei p. 27. 


I have said that the palatalized phoneme, PrFU s, corre- 
sponds to s or s in Mansi. Toivonen has recently suggested 
.(SUST, Ixvii, 377-84) a modification of Paasonen's theory 
to account for the Mansi dichotomy. He points out that 
in some words Md K U s corresponds to s in all the Mansi 
dialects, whereas, in other words, Md K U s corresponds to s 
in some dialects, to s in others. Thus, on the one hand, 
[Mn : TJ sart TO, KU sdrt VNK sar't LO sort So SOTD / Kh : K 
sort J sdrt / K sir ' pike ' l ; and, on the ether, [Mn : TJ, TO 
ssm KU sdm P, VN s[m VS, LU sim co KM sdm KO sim 
LO sim So sim / Kh : DN sdm V, Vj, Trj S9m' / H sziv / K 
s$lem / U sulem / Ma : KB, U, M sum / Md : E sed'ej M 
sed'i I ' heart ' / Lp cada ' per, trans ', etc. / F syddn ' heart '. 2 
Toivonen suggests that in the first case (Mansi, all dialects s) 
we are dealing with a PrFU palatalized s which has given 
a PrMn s, remaining in all the Mansi dialects as s ; and that, 
in the second case (Mn s co s) we are dealing with a PrFU 
palatalized s which has given a PrMn s ; in some dialects 
this PrMn s has given s (thus falling together with s < PrMn s 
< PrFU s), in others it has remained as s. Everywhere in 
Finno-Ugrian save Mansi, PrFU s and s have fallen together. 

" PrFU s, s, s " and " PrMn s, s "are, of course, merely 
symbols (cf. p. 70). Yet these symbols probably represent 
the actual sounds fairly accurately. The s-like character of 
both phonemes is attested by the fact that in the majority of 
the languages an s-like sound results. The distinction between 
palatalization and the lack of it is attested in two of the 
branches of Finno-Ugrian in Mordvin and in the Permian 
languages. And the Mansi data can hardly be explained save 
on Toivonen's theory. 

The position in the Ugrian languages deserves further 
consideration. In Khanty, PrFU s appears as I, I, t or i, in 
Mansi as t ; in Hungarian the phoneme vanishes. It would 
no doubt be rash to attempt a guess at the character the 

1 Toivonen p. 377. 2 Toivonen p. 378. 



phoneme had in PrUgr, but it is at all events improbable 
that it resembled any s-like sound. PrFU s appears as s in 
all three Ugrian languages ; in all probability, therefore, it 
resembled a normal unpalatalized s in PrUgr itself. The 
third phoneme, PrFU is more difficult ; the Mansi con- 
ditions no doubt merely reflect a survival. The loss of 
palatalization in Mansi (s > s) may, however, well have 
been contemporary with the loss of the palatalization of 
PrFU s in Ugrian ; the final change of s > s, attested by 
the s of Khanty, Hungarian and some Mansi dialects, would 
then be later. 

One more phoneme must be mentioned here to complete 
the s-series. This is PrFU s (unpalatalized). In its main 
Ugrian development it falls together with PrFU s, giving t 
in Mansi, I, I, t, i in the Khanty dialects and vanishing in 
Hungarian ; in the other Finno-Ugrian languages it remains 
as s save in Baltic Fennic (> F h) and Erz'a-Mordvin (> ts). 
Thus [H eger / Kh : Wt\gpr A^r^Gdr teytor wyfr'ar/Win 
terjGdr tarjkdr td^dr / K s{r / U s{r / Md : M sepr E tsejer / 
F hiiri ' mouse '. 1 

The Ugrian developments may then be represented by 
means of the following diagram : 

PrFU s and s 

PrUgr $ 



H Kh / It i Mn t H 52 

PrFU s 

PrUgr & 


Mn s 

Mn 3 

1 Szinnyei p. 27. 

2 t denotes a sound which is not s-like. 


II) IndE -m in Finno-Ugrian 

In Groups 76 (F seitsemdn) and lOa (F -deJcsan) it might 
well be suggested that IndE final -m is preserved in Finno- 
Ugrian (this is clearly not the case in Group 100 (F sata)). 
But no argument from Finno-Ugrian back to Indoeuropean 
can be made on this point because the true state of affairs 
may well have been masked by contamination with a native 
Finno-Ugrian suffix of somewhat similar form that found 
in F syddn (gen. sing, syddmen) : H. sziv ' heart ' (see p. 72) 
and K goz$m ( summer ' : K goz ' heat of the sun '. 

I turn now to the forms of the Groups in detail. 


The group appears to be of PrFU age and the reconstruction 
of the protoform *sdta- co laSa- presents no difficulties. The 
Mansi alternation s co s points to an initial PrFU I (see p. 72) 
and the medial consonant is clearly PrFU t co 8 as in H kez 
' hand ' (see below). 1 The a- vowels of Finno-Ugrian are 
almost the only ones about which much is known. In his 
article on these vowels, Z. Gombocz 2 gives Group 100 (F sata) 
as showing the vowel which he calls PrFU a ; the vowel- 
congruence is essentially parallel to that in [H hal / Kh 
x vl Vul / Mn kjui kul x ul / Ma M / Md kal / F Ma / Lp : S 
kudlle, K kull, N ou^lll / ' fish ' 3 ; the long vowel in H szdz 
(also in Mansi) is paralleled by that in [H kez Mn kdt, kao : 
Kh ket k'tft' /Kki/V ki / Ma kit / Md k'ed' k'ed' / F kasi / 
Lp : S keeota K kit N oieotd / ' hand ' 4 ). 5 

The final vowel involves some discussion of the difficult 
question of the vocalism of syllables other than the first in 
Finno-Ugrian. It will suffice to say here that the current 
theory is that in PrFU only two vowel-pairs were possible 

1 So Szinnyei p. 36. 

2 NyK xxxix ; 242, 252. 

3 Szinnyei p. 24. 

4 Szinnyei p. 23. 

5 On the long vowel see Z. Gombocz, Magyar torteneti nyelvtan III, 4 ff. 


in syllables other than the first, viz. a a and e, the latter 
pair being rather rare. The first pair normally appears as a a 
in Finnish, as e in Lappish and as a o in Mordvin ; the 
second as e in Finnish and as d in Lappish. Thus with PrFU 
a a : F jalka / Lp juoVge / Md jalga jalgo / ' leg ' ; with 
PrFU 3 e : F kate- / Lp Giettd ' hand '. The diversity of the 
vowels of the second syllable in Baltic Fennic (F i o o u u) 
is to be considered as due to a later development. 1 F sata / 
Lp cuotte / Md sada sado, with final vocalism identical with 
that of F jalka / Lp juoVge / Md jalga jalgo, thus clearly 
allow us to postulate a PrFU form with a in the second syllable. 

We now compare *sata- co saa- with the etymon j IndE 
*kmto- and draw the following conclusions : 

(i) The initial $ can hardly be a lautersatz for anything 

(ii) The etymon must clearly have Aryan a, not PrlndE m. 

(iii) Nothing can be inferred from the final Finno-Ugrian 
vowel ; it may represent Aryan a, or, with lautersatz, an 
earlier o. 

7aa and 7ab 

H het is usually explained 2 as from *et by analogy with 
hat ' 6 '. This form *et can be taken as congruent with the 
Khanty form ; both would imply a PrFU form with an 
unpalatalized s. 

The Mansi forms do not show the variation s co s ; they 
all have initial s. They would thus imply a PrFU form with 
a palatalized s and cannot therefore be congruent with the 
Khanty and Hungarian forms. 

All the Ugrian forms are congruent as regards the representa- 
tion of the IndE medial pt ; the consonants in question would 
imply a PrFU pt co fit a reasonable lautersatz for an IndE 
pt. In Khanty a svarabhakti vowel has been introduced 

1 The theory is due to P. Ravila who, in 1939, was preparing a large work 
on the subject. He has indicated his point of view FUF xx, 83-120 ; 
xxiii, 60. 

2 E.g. by J. Szinnyei, NyK xxxiii, 476. 


between the p and the t, whereas in Mansi and Hungarian 
the p has been lost. A control for the development postulated 
is afforded by F hapsi (< *hapti < *apti, by analogy with 
F haven ' beard ') / Mn at / ' hair ' / Kh : DN UB% Ni up*t' 
V, Vj dw9t l ' hair of the head ' and Ma optem / Mn uti ' to 
bark'. 1 

As is well known the vowel-phonology of Finno-Ugrian is 
in general far from certain. It seems, however, clear that 
the vowel of the Hungarian and Mansi forms derives from 
an original front, not a back vowel. Kannisto p. 3 considers 
the vocalism as identical with that of F kasi H kez (: kezem 
' my hand ') see p. 74, deriving from a PrMn a. The 
Khanty vowel* too apparently derives from a front vowel, 
PrKh d (Karjalainen p. 276), the vocalism being similar to 
that of [DN sdedt Trj sap'dA V, Vj sawdl' Ni sapdt' Kaz. 
sas9A sdbdl 2 [K sdpzt J sdp9L 3 ' neck '. 

It seems then that the Indoeuropean form underlying the 
Ugrian words for ' 7 ' was twice borrowed as if its representa- 
tion had been (i) PrFU *sdpt- co safit giving Group 7aa 

(H het and Kh fapbt) and (ii) PrFU *sapt- co saflt giving 

Group 7ab (Mn sat). 

We may now consider the Ugrian words for ' 7 ' in relation 
to their etymon | IndE *septm : 

(i) Etymons so early as to have final -m are hardly possible, 
for we should expect some trace of the -m. 

(ii) As I have said above (p. 61), a vowel of d- (not a-) 
quality is probable in the etymon. The suggestion that the 
borrowing took place at some time during the period when 
PrlndE e was in process of changing to Ar d is very plausible. 

(iii) There is no reason why an s-sound should have been 
used as a lautersatz for the Iran h of a form such as Av hapta, 
and we must therefore assume that the words were borrowed 

1 See E. N. Setala, FUF xii, 166-70. 
1 Karjalainen p. 2. 
3 DP No. 2119. 


before the change Ar s > Iran h took place. They are there- 
fore not of Iranian provenance. 

There now remains for discussion only the apparent variation 
between the implied initial PrFU s and the implied initial 
PrFU s as representations of the s of Indoeuropean. 

Toivonen (SUST Ixvii, 377-84) has called attention to 
this variation, paralleling it with unexplained variations in 
native Finno-Ugrian words between s and s : Mn suji sul : 
U sul / Md sud ' bark ' 1 and between s and ^ : Mn : TJ sat TC 
sat KU sot P K* VS so't LU sot KM, KO so ( t LO sbt So S*D 
' happiness ' / Kh : Kaz stft' sot ' power ', Kaz so-farf 
socfo?? ' happiness ' : K sud / U sud ( happiness '. 

It might of course be suggested : 

(i) That the words for ' 7 ' afforded a further example 
of the unexplained variation described above. 

(ii) That the s of Indoeuropean was different from PrFU 
s and that PrFU s and PrFU s were alternative lautersatze 
for it. This type of lautersatz is not uncommon . Thus, in the 
Scandinavian loan-words in English, ON gu (> Icel au), is 
represented by o, ou and au, e.g. OE roda : Olcel raudr ; 
ME gok, gowk, gauk : Olcel gaukr. 2 

But here I wish to suggest another explanation. Namely, 
that the etymon was borrowed twice into Ugrian. First, when 
the PrFU s-phonemes were still intact in Ugrian ; at this 
date it is reasonable to assume that the s of *sapt- would have 
been replaced by Ugr s (< PrFU s). Later Ugrian s was lost 
in Hungarian and gave It ti in Khanty ; hence H *et (> het) 
and Kh lapbt. And second, after the Ugrian changes had 
operated on the s-phonemes of Finno-Ugrian. The Ugrian 
representation of PrFU s was presumably no longer an s-like 
sound (see p. 73, above) and so could not represent the s of 
*sdpt- ; Ugr s ( < PrFU s) was the appropriate lautersatz ; 
hence Mn sat, with s in all dialects. 

1 Further examples will be found in Paasonen, s-laute. 

2 K. Luick, Historische grammatik der englischen sprache 384.2. 



Group 76 (F seitsemdn) is represented in all the Finno- 
Ugrian branches save Ugrian. Collinder has made a detailed 
study of the group (and especially of the Lappish forms) 
in his article " Die worter fur fiinf, sechs und sieben im 
lappischen ", Festskrift til Rektor J. Qvigstad (Tromso Museums 
Shifter II), pp. 356-374. His conclusions may be concisely 
expressed by saying that all the forms of the Group may be 
considered as implying a PrFU *sejt'$emd- or *sejt'semd- 
(and, since the form is not present in Mansi, it is clear that 
we must replace the initial s by " or s "see p. 72). 

The initial consonant presents no difficulty (the Lappish 
forms with k instead of c are due to analogy with guVtd ' 6 ' 
and gavce ' 8 '). 

The question whether the i of the Baltic Fennic forms is 
original or parasitic is one of some difficulty. Since the stem- 
vowels of the Lappish forms can all be explained from a 
PrLp e, acceptance of the first hypothesis leaves the absence 
of the j in Lappish for discussion ; in this connection too it 
may be mentioned that the stufenwechsel of the Lappish 
forms of Group 76 is difficult. There is some evidence for 
the loss of i as the second element of a diphthong in Lappish 
before c, s ; cf . las ] se = F laiha ( < Baltic *laisa- = Lith 
lesas) l thin ' (WP ii, 388). Collinder is of the opinion that 
the ei is original. 

The medial t's or t's has been fully discussed by Y. H. 
Toivonen FUF xix ; 166, 226 ff. 

There is also very considerable difficulty as to the final 
part of the form. There has certainly been analogy between 
the nominative and accusative ; furthermore, it is difficult 
to ascertain how far there has been analogical interaction 
between Groups 76 (F seitsemdn), 8a (F kahdeksan) and 9a 
(F yhdeksdn). 

We may now compare our reconstructed protoform for 
Group 76 (F seitsemdn) with the postulated etymon | IndE 


*sektm, *sektm ( J, IndE *septm, *septm are clearly impossible 
as etymons) : 

(i) There seems no reason why the initial Finno-Ugrian 
phoneme should not be a lautersatz either for the s of Indo- 
european before it gave Iran h, or for some stage of s. 

(ii) There is perfect agreement as to the e. 

(iii) I suggest that jt'& or jt's is a possible lautersatz for ct ; 
a control is hardly to be expected. 1 

(iv) There is certainly no reason why the final -m of the 
Indoeuropean etymon should not be represented (as it appears 
to be) in the Finno-Ugrian forms. But it is impossible to 
prove that this actually is the case, by reason of the possible 
masking of the suffix discussed above (p. 74), and also 
because of the analogies discussed by Collinder. 

There seems therefore no reason to suppose that Group 76 
(F seitsemdn) is of provenance other than that suggested here. 
But there are in the Samoyede languages words for ' 7 ' 
rather similar to Group 76 (F seitsemdn). If these words are 
in fact cognate with the latter then the whole of the above 
theory falls to the ground. 

We may conveniently arrange the Samoyede forms in 
the following groups : 

la) [N sijiw 2 ([Knd seu 3 ) [I saJBua* [Ye setjo 5 [Km 
sei'bii 6 [seigbi 7 [Kb sseigbe 8 [Khotov seigbe. g 

1 If, for any reason, we disagree with Collinder's view that the t of 
Baltic Fennic is original and not parasitic and accept the converse, then 
we must assume that t' or t's is a lautersatz for ct ; there appears to be 
nothing against this. 

JIPNS i, 35. 

Paasonen, KSz xv, 92. 

JIPNS i, 68. 

JIPNS i, 85. 

M. A. Castren, Grammatik der samojedischen sprachen pp. 192-3. 

D. G. Messerschmidt's Tagebucher (in J. Klaproth, Asia Polyglotta) : 
Entry of 26th December, 1721 (Donner p. 9). 

8 P. S. Pallas, Eeise durch verschiedene provinzen des russischen reichs 
iii, 374 (Donner p. 15). 

9 P. J. von Strahlenberg, Das nord-ostliche theil von Europa und Asia 
(Donner p. 8). 


Ib) [Mt keipbe 1 [knbe* [T keibii 3 [Kr gydby. 1 

Ila) S Tym dialect [sel$i* 

lib) S LV [Mii 5 (= Castren's [hel^ hiel^ 6 ). 

Then la is certainly congruent to Ib and so is Ha to lib. 
But I is not congruent to II. 7 For Motor and Taigi k can 
certainly correspond to N s s (Knd s) I s Ye s Kb s Km s 
(S s co s) ; thus [Km suimu ' mare ' / S sumd suma sowa 
suwa suwwa ( hen-capercailzie ' / N sibe-ko sibe-ku (Knd 
sibeku) ' female ' / Kb sjuima ' mare ' : Mt keibe ' mare '. 8 
And, in Sel'kup, Tym s regularly corresponds to Lower 
Yasyugan h ; thus [Tym saji : LV haji ' eye '. 9 

So far we have been dealing with internal Samoyede 
phonology, a subject itself in no advanced state. But 
when we leave this and attack the problem of linking up 
Samoyede phonology with that of Finno-Ugrian, we are on 
very unsafe ground. And indeed it is clear that one of the 
main tasks of the Finno-Ugrian philology of the next few 
decades must be first, the reconstruction of a reliable Primitive 
Samoyede ; second, the investigation of the question whether 
the reconstruction of a Primitive Uralian is possible and, 
if it prove to be so, the achievement of the task. At the 
present state of knowledge the following must suffice. 

A) The initial consonantism. The normal correspondent of a 
PrFU s (i.e. " s or s "see p. 72) is s (s, s) in all the Samoyede 
languages, save in those dialects Lower Vasyugan dialect 
of Sel'kup, Konda dialect of Nenets where this s has become h. 
Thus [N saeu Knd haem / I sajme / Ye sei / S saiji sai hei 

1 P. S. Pallas, Reise durch- verschiedene provinzen des russischen reichs 
iii, 374 (Donner p. 15). 

2 J. Klaproth, Fundgruben des Orients v, 67 (Donner p. 23). 

3 J. Klaproth, Sprachatlas, Tafel XI (Donner p. 50). 

4 JIPNS i, 106. 

5 Letter from Professor Prokov'iev, 25/2/39. 

6 M. A. Castren, Grammatik der samojedischen sprachen pp. 192-3. 

7 So Collinder p. 374 ; Z. Gombocz, Festschrift Vilhelm Thomsen p. 12. 

8 Paasonen, KSz xv, 84. 

9 Professor Prokov'iev, loc. cit. 


hai / Km sima / Kb sima / M sima / T sime-dd l : H szem / 
etc. 2 ' eye '. But, in a few cases, while the majority of the 
Samoyede languages have the normal correspondent, the 
Konda dialect of Nenets has s (not h) and Motor and Taigi 
have k (Karagass 2). Thus [N seai siei : Knd sej / I sa, soa / 
Ye seo / Km si / Kb sei / : M keje-m / Taigi kei-m 3 : H sziv, 
etc. 4 ' heart '. The reason for the difference between excep- 
tional and normal treatment is not clear ; see Paasonen, 
KSz xvi, 26 ff. But there is thus no doubt that the Samoyede 
and Finno-Ugrian forms of ' 7 ' could be regarded as con- 
gruent in their initial consonantism. 

B) The medial consonantism. The Samoyede correspondent 
of a PrFU t's or t'& is either a spirant or an affricate ; thus 
[N T)at'e-~ky r)ace-ky ' young, child ' / Ye et'i et'e ' young ' / 
Km esi ' child ' / Kb ese ' boy ' / T isi ' child ' 5 : K : I, U, 
V, S, IU it's-mon ' bride, young woman ' / U : U, G, B 
it' 'si-men M, U it'$i-men J, M, S it'$i-men ' young wife ' 6 ; 
cf. also, possibly, [Liv milts ' to sweep ' : S mesennam, etc. 
* to clear away '. 7 It is thus certain that the medial con- 
sonantism of neither of the Samoyede words for ' 7 ' can 
possibly correspond to that of Group 7b (F seitsemdn). 

On the whole then we must reject the suggestion that 
Group 76 (F seitsemdn) and either of the (mutually incon- 
gruent) Samoyede words for ' 7 ' are descended from the 
same Primitive Uralian form. 8 And this is what we should 
expect on general grounds. The Samoyede numerals are 
unrelated to those of Finno-Ugrian (NFU pp. 11-13) and, 
in view of the sextal system of Finno-Ugrian, 7 is the last 
numeral we should expect to find already present in Primitive 

Collinder (pp. 373-4) tentatively suggests that one of the 
Samoyede words for * 7 ' (Group I : I sajsua, etc.), Group 76 

1 Paasonen, KSz xiii, 241 (and xvi, 14). 2 See above, p. 71. 
3 Paasonen, KSz xiv, 42 (and xvi, 14). 4 See above, p. 72. 

5 Paasonen, KSz xv, 96. 

6 Uotila p. 152 taken as with PrFU t's (t'). 

7 Paasonen, KSz xv, 98-9. 8 So Paasonen, KSz xv, 92. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. O 


(F seitsemdn) and IndE *septm all descend from one common 
" Indo-Uralian " form. This suggestion is of course due to the 
similarity of the three words. There is undoubtedly a 
coincidence here, but there seems to me no reason to think 
it other than due to chance. 1 

There seems then no reason to accept Collinder's suggestion 
that we are dealing here with an extremely old " Indo- 
Uralian " word for ' 7 '. And, on general grounds, I think 
that this is a satisfactory conclusion. We know little of any 
earlier numeration-systems underlying either Samoyede or 
Indoeuropean, but it would be very surprising to find only 
the number ' 7 ' represented in this way. 2 


Y. H. Toivonen, FUF xvii, 286, tentatively suggests that 
this Permian form is congruent to Group lOa (F -deksan). 
But the arguments which Uotila pp. 172 ff. adduces against 
this view seem conclusive and the matter need not be further 
discussed here. It seems clear that Group Wf (KU das) 
represents a much later borrowing of IndE *dekm. 
The following points call for discussion. 

(i) According to the accepted view PrFU (like MnF) had 
initially only unvoiced stops p, t, k* Permian shows both 
p, t, k and b, d, g in the initial position and there is a difference 
of opinion as to the age and provenance of these voiced 
initial stops ; they have been considered to be of secondary 
Permian origin by some, by others to have been present in 

1 We could immediately " enlarge " the coincidence by observing that 
the word for ' 7 ' in the Hamito-Semitic family of languages is also rather 
similar : Assyrian siba sibi (fern, sibittu) Hebrew sssfias Arabic sabyu n 
Ethiopic sab^u ; Egyptian sf% Coptic sasf. I know that it has been suggested 
that the Indoeuropean and Hamito-Semitic families are ultimately related 
(cf. for instance H. Moller, Vergleichendes indogermanisch-semitisches 
worterbuch) but geographical considerations, apart from anything else, 
seem to militate against this theory. 

2 Cf. J. McKenzie, Leeds Studies in English and Kindred Languages 
vi, 1-4. 

3 Setala pp. 1 if. 


PrFU itself ; see further Uotila pp. 2 ff. Under these circum- 
stances it is clear that the initial d of Group Wf (KU das) 
leads to no conclusion as to the age of the borrowing. 

(ii) There are admittedly cases in which a Permian a 
apparently corresponds to a front vowel elsewhere in Finno- 
Ugrian ; e.g. F vehna ' wheat ' : U vaz vaz ' spelt '. But, 
on the whole, there seems no reason to doubt that the a of 
Group 10 f (KU das) corresponds to the a of Olran dasa 
rather than to the d of Oss das. We have, of course, no 
knowledge as to whether the final a was present in the etymon 
of Group 10 f (KU das) or not. 

(iii) The s of Group 10 f (KU das) is unpalatalized ; it is 
moreover a voiceless phoneme. In Permian, PrFU s, s, 1 
s become voiced between the first and second syllables ; 
cf., for instance, [F kuusi : K koz / U lc(z ' fir ' 2 (Uotila p. 172). 
Das must therefore have been borrowed some time after the 
completion of this change. The s is thus easy to explain, 
though we naturally know nothing of the actual chronology 
involved. 3 

(iv) As I have said above, it is possible that the etymon of 
Group 10 f (KU das) had a final vowel (: Olran dasa, rather 
than Oss das). There is a well-known apocope in the Permian 
languages and this has been the subject of a valuable study : 
Gy. Lake's A permi nyelvek szovegi magdnhangzoi (Finnugor 
ertekezesek No. 2, 1934). Lako demonstrates that the apocope 
depends in part upon the quality of the vowel and I find myself 
in doubt as to how far his views as to the final vowels of PrFU 
would be in agreement with those current in Finland (referred 

1 s and s fall together in Permian (p. 72). 

2 T. E. Uotila, Syrjanische chrestomathie, p. 104. 

3 The " Chuvash " (i.e. Volga -Bulgarian see Wichmann pp. 129 ff.) 
loan-words of Permian afford no control here ; an isolated case such as 
U sesfr : Chuvash syvzyr ' cripple ' (Wichmann pp. 14, 93) entitles us to 
assume that the Permian voicing of s between the first and second syllables 
was complete when this word was borrowed, but the borrowing may have 
been quite recent. 


to above, pp. 74-5). But, at all events, this much is clear. 
There are three types to consider : 

A) There is apocope both in Komi and Udmurt ; thus F 
nimi : K nim / U nim l name ' (Lako, op. cit. p. 50). 

B) There is apocope in Komi but not in Udmurt ; thus 
F lumi : K l{m : U l{m\ ' snow ' (Lako, op. cit. p. 6). 

C) There is apocope in neither language ; thus F paasky : 
K pist'i (<*pi&M)/\J p$ski poski, etc., 'swallow' (Lako, 
op. cit. p. 33). 

Our form, KU das, falls under Type A ; it may have had 
a final vowel and, if it had, it has been lost both in Komi 
and Udmurt. We are therefore here only concerned with the 
dating of the apocope of Type A. For this apocope we have 
some chronological control that afforded by the Chuvash 
loans in both Permian languages. These probably began to 
be borrowed about A.D. 700 (Wichmann pp. 129 ff.). There 
is one certain example of a Chuvash loan-word showing 
apocope of Type A K k&'s ' hare ' / U : U ket's M, J leet'S 
' goat ', MU ket$ l hare ' : Pr. Chuvash *M6a (cf. Chuvash 
kao'za ( goat ', mol-gdc l hare '). l Apocope of Type A must 
therefore have taken place after A.D. 700. 

It seems therefore probable that the etymon of Group 10 f 
(KU das) is das(a ; the age of the borrowing is doubtful, it 
may well have been late. 


The phonology of these Finno-Ugrian forms is difficult. 
E. N. Setala, FUF xii, 162-6, regards them all as congruent 
and derives them from a PrFU *kay$en-deksam, *uyoen- 
deksam. He points out that : 

a) The first elements, *kay$en, *%Sew, are obviously 
related to F kaksi ' 2 ', F yksi ' 1 ', the common Finno-Ugrian 
words for these numerals, but the details of the relationship 
are obscure. 

b) There has been haplological loss of the second syllable 

1 Lako, op. cit. p. 55 ; Wichmann p. 73. 


in Baltic Fennic ; thus PrFU *kayen-deksam, *uyen- 
deksdm > *kaydeksam, *uydeksdm > F kahdeksan, yhdeksdn. 

c) The Lappish and Volga forms are in all probability 
congruent to the Baltic Fennic forms but the phonology is 

d) The provenance of the " intrusive " 77 in the Yaransk 
dialect of Mari is obscure. 

e) The final -m of *-deksam, *-deksdm is attested by forms 
such as Vatya kahgsa, gen. kah$ssama, kahess$m$ ; uhesd, 
gen. uhessdmd, uhesseme ; Est dialect gen. kaheksme, -ma; 
uheksme, -ma ; kaheksamas, uheksamas ' 8th ', ' 9th ' ; Liv 
kd'ddksmin, u'ddksmin l 8 each ', ' 9 each ' ; kd'ddksm&z y 
u'ddksmdz ' 8th ', 9th '. * 

/) The unpalatalized s of *-deksam, *-deksdm is attested by 
the Mordvin forms with s. 

We may now compare with the etymon, j IndE *deJcm. 
The first two phonemes present no difficulty clearly *de 
are represented in the Finno-Ugrian form. There is doubt 
about the final -m ; it may well be preserved in Finno- 
Ugrian, but this cannot be proved by reason of possible 
masking (see p. 74) and of analogical interaction with 
Group 76 (F seitsemdn) see p. 78. And, however we regard 
it, the medial ks of F -deksan is difficult. 2 Setala, loc. cit.> 
suggests that it may have been a lautersatz for IndE k itself. 
There existed medially a PrFU phoneme kk co k as in 
[F loukko : gen. sing, loukon ' split ' / H lyuk ' hole ' / Ma luk 
' split '. 3 We have, of course, no exact phonetic knowledge 
of the character of this phoneme. (Initially, PrFU had two 
^-phonemes, a back one (> H h) and a front one (> H k) ; 
thus F kala /ILhal' fish V 4 F kdsi / H kez < hand '. 5 ) It is 
clearly not possible to disprove ,Setala's hypothesis, but 
I think that, on the whole, one would have expected PrlndE 2 
to have been replaced by PrFU kk co k. I wish therefore to 

1 See also Setala pp. 400 ff. 

2 See, for instance, H. Jacobsohn, SUST Ixvii, 147. 

3 Szinnyei p. 34 4 Szinnyei p. 24. 5 Szinnyei p. 23. 


suggest that the ks of F -deksan is a lautersatz for the phoneme 
I have denoted by c. 

The semantic relation between the two elements of the 
compounds *kaySendeksam, *u f y$endeksdm is obscure. It is, 
however, clear that, if two words mean, respectively, ' 8 ' 
and * 9 ' and their first elements ' 1 ' and * 2 ' while their last 
element means ' 10 ', then the numerals must be subtractives 
(like Lat undeviginti). 

All the Finno-Ugrian numerals for c 8 ' and ' 9 ' are indeed 
subtractives. 1 In the Permian languages we have 8b [K 
kikjamis / U t'amis z (earlier [kik' jamas 3 ) 4 and 9b [K okmis / 
U ukm{s. 2 The first elements of these are the PrFU words 
for ' 2 ' (2 : F kaksi / KU k{k) and ' 1 ' (la : F yksi / K &'i / 
U og). The second element is a word for ' 10 ', widespread in 
Finno-Ugrian Group Wb, which occurs most clearly as -mis 
for standard -m{n in the Udora and Vym' dialects of Komi 
in the words for ' 30 ', ' 40 ', ' 50 ' and ' 60 'thus \neVam\s 
beside nel'amin * 40 '. 5 It is also found in the Hungarian 
words for ' 8 ', ' 9 ' and ' 30 'nyolc, kilenc, Jiarminc (: 3 H 
hdrom, etc.). 

The forms in the Ugrian languages are less uniform. The 
last element of 8c ([Mn nololu 6 / [Kh nivbl 1 ) and 9c ([Mn 
ontolu 6 ) is doubtless the word for '10', Group We: [Mn 
Zow/Ma lu/Lp iQge (cf. F lukea 'to read, count'). 8 The 
first element of 8c is the same as that of 8d (H nyolc with 
second element already discussed) and is of unknown pro- 
venance. The second element of 9d (H kilenc) is that already 
discussed, the first element is of unknown provenance, as 
is also the first element of 9c (Mn ontolu). The second element 

1 I follow the system of group-numbering used in NFU. 

2 Szinnyei, Sprw p. 93. 

' 3 F. Miller, Opisanie zhivushchikh v Kazanskoi gubernii yazycheskikh 
narodov (a. 1743), p. 99. 

On the phonology of the Udmurt form see Uotila, p. 19. 
Szinnyei, Sprw pp. 93-4. 
JIPNS i, 177. 
JIPNS i, 209. 
Szinnyei, Sprw p. 93. 


of 9e Khjarjay 1 is clearly Wd [Kh jay 1 : [DN io^ DT io^rj 
Fil io^rj Sogom jdSj K io^ Trj je x ^' V, Vj ig^rf Ni jd^' 
Kaz 2V I . 7 ? 2 f K90 8 * 4 5 the fi rs t i s obscure. 5 

In the Finno-Ugrian languages we are thus confronted with 
subtractives for ' 8 ' and ' 9 ' of two different types. In 
Type A the meaning of both parts of the compound is clear 
the first means ' 2 ' or ' 1 ', the second ' 10 ' and we have 
ellipse. Here belong 8a (F kahdeksan), 9a (F yhdeksan), 
8b (K kikjamis / U t'amis) and 9b (K okm{s / U ukmis). In 
Type B the meaning of the second element is clear it means 
' 10 ' but that of the first is not. Here belong all the remaining 
groups 8c (Mn pololu / Kh pivbl), 8d (H nyolc), 9c (Mn 
ontolu), 9d (H kilenc) and 9e (Kh jarjarf}. 

1 JIPNS i, 209. 

2 Karjalainen, p. 15. 

3 DP, No. 365. 

4 This word is certainly reminiscent of some of the Tungus forms for 
10 ' ; cf. Manchu fiuwan Solon $uan ^un Olcha, Samar \ua Negidal ^oan 

300, (W. Kotwicz, Rocznik orjentalistyczny vi, 179). There is of course 
nothing inherently improbable in a Tungus loan-word in Khanty ; even 
to-day there are two islands of Tungus (Sym' -Tungus) in the Khanty area 
(about half-way between the Ob' and the Irtysh, south-east of Narym 
see Z. E. Chernyakov, Karta rasprostraneniya yazykov narodov severa SSSR., 
1934). With regard to the phonology of the postulated loan it may be 
noted : (i) That Kh ja-rj is probably to be regarded as having a PrKh a, 
i.e. a slightly-fronted a-sound (Karjalainen, p. 15) ; (ii) The representation 
of a foreign 3-phoneme by a Khanty j-phoneme can be paralleled. There 
are words with H gy Kh j representing the j-development of Old Turkish j 
(Z. Gombocz, Die bulgarisch-turkischen lehnworter in der ungarischen sprache 
pp. 179-80) ; thus H gyalom / Kh : K fatem DN idnam ' drag-net ' < Old 
Chuvash *^ylym (: Kirgiz ^ylym Bashkir jylym ' drag-net ') (Gombocz, 
op. cit., No. 76) ; H gyekeny ' rush, rush-mat ' / Kh : DN iecdn Trj jdJt't 
Ni iikan' Kaz toe aw' ' rush-mat ' < Old Chuvash *$ikan (: Kirgiz fygan 
Jagatai jdkdn ' kind of reed' ) (Gombocz, op. cit., No. 82). In concluding 
this note it may be added that the Tungus word for ' 10 ' has been borrowed 
into Motor and Taigi Mt dshiuen (Pallas, op. cit. on p. 79 above, p. 374 
Donner p. 15) / T dzhUn (J. Klaproth, Sprachatlas, Tafel XI Donner p. 50). 

5 It is probably the use of subtractives for ' 8 ' and ' 9 ' in Khanty which 
has occasioned the subtractives for these numerals in the neighbouring 
Sel'kup and Ket (Yenisei-Ostyak) ; cf. Sel'kup sittb cseykbntbl kdt * 8 ', 
ukkbr fserjkbntbl k0t ' 9 ' (: ukkbr ' 1 ', sittb ' 2 ', kdt ' 10* JIPNS i, 106) ; 
Ket bndm bdnsa qo$ ' 8 ', qu$am bdiisa qos ' 9 ' (: qu$am ' 1 ', &warn ' 2 '. 
qos ' 10 'JIPNS iii. 231). 


The Dravidian words for ' 9 ' may profitably be discussed 
in connection with these Finno-Ugrian subtractives for * 8 ' 
and ' 9 '. Tamil onbadu Malay alam onbadu Kanarese ombhattu 
Coorg oyimbadu Tuda onpath' ' 9 ' form a congruent set ; 
their second element clearly means ' 10 ' (: Tamil pattu 
Old Kanarese pattu Tuda pattu, etc., ' 10 '), while their first 
element is usually regarded as obscure. x Tulu ormba ' 9 ' 
appears to have as its first element the adjectival form of 
the word for ' one ' (Tamil oru, etc.) ; its second element 
could be a very reduced form of the word for ' 10 '. 2 It might 
perhaps be suggested that the first element of the set Tamil 
onbadu, etc., was an abbreviated form of the word for ' one * 
(: Tamil onru, etc.). It will thus be seen that certainly Tulu 
ormba ' 9 ' and possibly the set Tamil onbadu, etc., afford an 
exact parallel to our Type A a subtractive numeral with 
ellipse. 3 In general it may be noted that subtractive numerals 
are not uncommon. Thus we have in Malay delapan (earlier 
dualapan) ' 8 ', literally ' 2 taken [from 10] ' (: dua ' 2 ', 
alap ' to take ') ; sembilan ' 9 ', literally ' 1 taken [from 10] ' 
(:*a '!', ambil 'to take'). 4 

The detailed part of this paper is now finished. There 
remain two obvious questions : I) Is there any contradiction 
in the preceding, somewhat complex, argumentation ; II) Do 
the other Indoeuropean loan-words in Finno-Ugrian afford us 
any useful control ? 

The answer to the first question is clearly in the affirmative 

1 See R. Caldwell, A comparative grammar of the Dravidian or South- 
Indian family of languages (3rd ed.), pp. 346 ff. 

2 Telugu tommidi ' 9 ' has the same second element * 10 ' ; its first 
element is probably to be connected with Tamil to/ ' hole ; to make a hole in ' 
and tommidi ' 9 ' might thus mean, literally, something like ' deficiency 
ten ' ; cf. the same first element in Tamil tonnuru ' 90 ' (: nuru ' 100 ') 
and Tamil tollayiram ' 900 ' (: ayiram ' 1000 '). 

3 I am indebted to Professor T. Burrow for the Dravidian information. 

4 See Ph. S. van Ronkel, Oostersch Genootschap in Nederland: Verslag 
van het 8 Congres gehoiiden te Leiden op 6-8 Januari 1936, pp. 43-6. 


and the contradiction must now be eliminated. Group WO 
(F sata) certainly represents a borrowing into PrFU itself 
congruent forms are present in all the branches of Finno- 
Ugrian. And I have suggested that, of the series IndE 
k > c > $ > s, it is the ^ that is attested by the PrFU form. 
On the other hand, Group lOa (F -deksan) appears not to 
represent a borrowing into PrFU ; it is not present in Ugrian 
or Permian and it might be supposed that the borrowing did 
not take place until after these languages had separated out. 
But I have suggested that, of the series IndE k > c > I > s, 
it is the c that is attested by the Finno-Ugrian forms. Therefore 
I have implied the later stage of Indoeuropean as co-existing 
with the earlier stage of Finno-Ugrian, which is absurd. And, 
to eliminate this absurdity, I put forward the following 
theory. Despite appearances, Group lOa (F -deksan) does 
represent a borrowing into PrFU itself and, moreover, an 
earlier one than does Group 100 (F sata) ; however, the Ugrian 
and Permian congruents of Group lOa (F -deksan) died out 
and were replaced. Further, Group 76 (F seitsemdn) also 
represents a borrowing into PrFU and its Ugrian cognates 
died out and were replaced by Groups 7aa (H het) and 7ab 
(Mn sat). 

The second question the matter of useful control is of 
course a very large one. To answer it adequately would in 
effect involve a rewriting of H. Jacobsohn's well-known book, 
Arier and Ugrqfinnen, in the light of modern Finno-Ugrian 
philology. Here all that can be attempted is to discuss, very 
briefly, the Finno-Ugrian representations of the Indoeuropean 
phonemes and phoneme-groups given on p. 60. 

(1) IndE >Ar d: (i) e in Group Wa (F -deksan);' 
(ii) d in Groups 7aa (H het) and 7ab (Mn sat). There are 
cases where IndE e is represented and also cases where Ar d 
is represented. The first type is discussed by H. Jacobsohn 
in his last article (published posthumously, SUST Ixvii, 
136-47) ; see also his Arier und Ugrofinnen pp. 161 ff. 
This representation is attested, for instance, by [F mehildinen / 


Md meks mes / H meh ' bee ' 1 : Skt maksd maksikd ' fly, 
bee ' Lett masalas ' horse-fly ' (WP ii, 225) ; F rihma / 
Lp r&sme ' yarn ' : Skt rasml ' thong ' (the Finno-Ugrian 
vocalism points to an earlier <?). 2 The second representation 
is clear in Mn sol sal sal ' pointed stick ' / U sail ' stick ' : 
Skt salyd- ' point of a spear ' Olcel hali (WP i, 431). 3 There 
seems thus nothing against the postulation of a stage a, 
intermediate between IndE e and Ar a, though I have not 
been able to find a clear control for it. 

(2) IndE o > Ar a : -am Group 100 (F sata). From what 
has been said above (pp. 74-5), it is clear that discussion on 
this point is not profitable. 

(3) IndE m > Ar a : a in Group 100 (F sata) ; on the 
representation of final -m in Groups Wa (F -deksan), 7b 
(F seitsemdn) see pp. 74, 78. There appears to be no safe control 
here. (On the difficult question of the representation of 
IndE r in the Finno-Ugrian loan-words see Jacobsohn 
pp. 184 if. ; SUST Ixvii, 142 ff.) 

(4) IndE t : t in Group 100 (F sata) ; [F kota co gen. sing. 
kodan / Lp : N oovoti co gen. sing. Goi)$i S ko&te co gen. sing. 
koste ' hut ' / H hdz / Kh xt k'dt' ' house ' / K ker-ka, -ku 
1 house, room ' / U kua / Ma kubo ku$9 ' hut ' / Md kud kudo 
' house, etc.' 4 : Av kata- ' room ' Goth hetyo OBulg kotbcb 
' nest ' (WP i, 383-4) 5 affords good control. 

(5) IndE d: d in Group Wa (F -deksan), lOf (KU das). 
Control is not to be expected for the representation in 
Group lOa (F -deksan) by reason of the haplology. For the 
representation in Group lOf (KU das), cf. K dar / U durl 
' ladle ' : Skt darvi- ' ladle ' (cf. Skt dam- ' wood ' Gk $6pv 
MnEZree 6 ). 7 

(6) IndE pt : in Groups 7aa (H het) and 7ab (Mn sat) no 
control available. 

1 Szinnyei p. 45. 

3 Jacobsohn p. 128. 

5 Jacobsohn p. 225. 

7 Jacobsohn p. 209. 

2 E. N. Setala, FUF viii, 77-80. 
4 Szinnyei p. 36. 
6 WP i, 804 ff. 


(7) IndE s > Iran h : in Groups 7aa (H het) and 7ab 
(Mn sat). Jacobsohn pp. 177 if. discusses cases where Finno- 
Ugrian has s, not h from Iranian ; some of these would 
imply a PrFU s (or I see p. 72). Thus H sor ser / KU sur / 
Mn sor / Kh sar ' beer ' : Skt surd- ' spirituous liquor ' Av hum 
' koumiss ' (WP ii, 468) certainly implies an s-like, not an 
A-like, representation. I have not found a control for the 
representation postulated by me for Group 7aa (H het). 
For the representation of Iran h by an /^-phoneme we have 
H hid : Oss : Digor xed Iron xid ' bridge ' Av haetu- ' dyke ' 
Skt setu- ' bridge ' (Skold pp. 23-4). * 

(8) s : in Group 76 (F seitsemdn) no control available. 

(9) IndE &>c>>s: 

(i) Initial in Group 100 (F sata). Y. H. Toivonen has 
discussed the parallels to this, SUST Ixvii, 377-84 ; he 
gives, with Mn s oo s (i.e. implying a PrFU s see p. 72) 
H szarv szaru / KU sur / Ma sur / Md suro surd / Lp coarvve / 
F sarvi ' horn ' : Av sru- ' horn ' ; Mn : KU sor*p P, VN, 
VS, LU, LM sorp KO sorp co KM sorp LO sorp So s*rpi 
1 male elk ' : Lat ceruus OPruss sirwis ' roe ' (WP i, 403-8) ; 
see also Jacobsohn, Part II. 

(ii) Medial in Group 10a (F -deJcsan). As Jacobsohp 
(SUST Ixvii, 145-7) points out, there is no control here. 

(10) IndE kt : in Group 76 (F seitsemdn) ? no control 

(11) IndE Jest see pp. 68-9. 

These few brief notes will, I hope, have shown that the 
controls available do not, at the least, conflict with the 
hypotheses as to lautersatz put forward above. 

We liave now, I think, a reasonably satisfactory picture 
of the whole. As I have suggested in NFU, the speakers of 
Primitive Finno-Ugrian counted only up to six. Then they 

WP ii 464. 


came into contact with the decimal system of Indoeuropean. 
They took over the word for ' 7 ' (in an analogized form) 
intact, and this has survived in all the Finno-Ugrian branches 
save Ugrian. In Ugrian this original word for ' 7 ' was replaced 
by a reborrowing of the Indoeuropean word and this more- 
over at two different stages before and after the operation 
of the Ugrian s-changes. It is probable too that at this same 
early period the speakers of Primitive Finno-Ugrian also 
took over the Indoeuropean word for ' 10 ' and we may 
imagine that, at a slightly later period, diverse words for 
' 10 ', doubtless of a suppletive character (like Group We 
Lp logesee p. 86) also came into being. From the Indo- 
european loan for ' 10 ' and from these suppletives, words 
for ' 8 ' and ' 9 ' were formed by subtraction. One such 
expression for ' 8 ' and ' 9 ' was present in Primitive Finno- 
Ugrian itself Groups Sa (F kahdeksan) and 9a (F yhdeksdn) ; 
some of the others perhaps came into being later, during the 
development of the individual languages (cf. pp. 86-7). 
The subtractives built up on the Indoeuropean word for 
' 10 ', Groups Sa (F kahdeksan) and 9a (F yhdeksan) survived, 
save in Ugrian and Permian. But the word for ' 10 ' itself 
was everywhere replaced by suppletives and, in Ugrian and 
Permian, the original subtractives for ' 8 ' and ' 9 ' were 
replaced by other subtractives formed on the suppletives. 
At a later date there was a specifically Permian borrowing of 
the Iranian word for ' 10 ' Group 10 f (KU das). At a period 
certainly later than that at which they borrowed the Indo- 
european word for ' 10 ', and possibly later than that at which 
Groups 8a (F kahdeksan) and 9a (F yhdeksdn) were formed, 
the speakers of Primitive Finno-Ugrian borrowed the Indo- 
european word for ' 100 ' and this has survived in all the 
branches of Finno-Ugrian (Group 100 (F sata)). 

The scheme put forward here is in good agreement with the 
Indoeuropean aspect of the matter. Groups 76 (F seitsemdn) 
and lOa (F -deksan) represent the earliest period a period 
at which IndE e was still intact and at which the series IndE 


k > c > s > s was at its second stage (c in Group Wa (F 
-deksan), ct in Group 76 (F seitsemdn)) ; IndE m'may also 
have been intact, but we can neither prove nor disprove 
this (pp. 74, 78). At the next period of borrowing to which 
Group 100 (F sata) belongs, the third stage of the palatal 
series, I, is attested and IndE m has certainly become a. 
At the next period that at which the Ugrian borrowings 
of * 7 ' took place IndE e is at the stage a, on its way to a. 
Finally the Permian borrowing of ' 10 ' is a much later 
borrowing, from the Iranian of South Russia. l 

1 The naming of the various stages of Indoeuropean involved is perhaps 
not a matter of any great importance ; it might be suggested that Groups 76 
{F seitsemdn) and 10a (F -deksan) represent " parent satera-Indoeuropean " ; 
the remainder (save Group 10/ (KU das)), " early Primitive Aryan." 





IN Celtic, as in other Indo-European languages, the notions of 
negation and intensity can be expressed with nouns and 
adjectives by means of composition, a negative or intensive 
prefix being added to the simple word. The negative prefixes 
so used in Celtic dialects are I-E. *n-, *eks-, *de-, and in Irish 
further the forms neb- and mi- (Pedersen, VKG ii 6). 

I-E. *n- appears in Irish in various forms according to the 
sound which originally followed it. Before vowels and u, m 
the result is an-, a following u appearing as spirant b : gpl. 
ban ' of women ' < ^g^n-om ; ainb ' ignorant ' < *n-uid- ; 
ainm ' name ' < *n-men. Before original p, the result is am-, 
the p disappearing in all dialects of Celtic : amulach ' beard- 
less ' < *n-pulako- (Skr. pulakas ' bristling hair '). Before 
c, t the result is e- with ' nasalization ' (voicing) of the con- 
sonant : ec ( death ' < *nku- (Gr. VCKVS) ', det ' tooth ' 
< *dnt- (Lat. dens, Goth, tunpus). Before b the result is im- : 
imb ' butter ' < *n-g"en (Lat. unguen). Before d, g the result 
is in- : indliged ' injustice ' (dliged ' justice,, law ') ; ingnath 
1 wonderful ' < *n-g'noto- (Gr. ay v cores'). 

Pedersen has shown that in the case of the negative prefix 
*n- analogy has led to the spreading of the ante- vocalic form 
an-, and that the form am- has also spread to forms in which 
there was no original^. In both Irish and Welsh am- (W. af-) 
has become generalized before I, n, r : amlabar ' dumb ' 
(W. aflafar) ; amnert ' weakness ', W. afnaws ' shameless ' ; 
amreid ' rough ' (W. afrwydd). And Ir. amchain, amchiall 
(beside eciall, ancellide), amdarc, amdeon (beside aindeon), 

* This paper was read at a meeting of the Linguistic Institute held in 
Madison, Wisconsin, in August, 1944, and has benefited by comments from 
some of those who heard it. 


amdess (beside andess), amfesach (beside anfiss, ainbhfios), 
amgand, amgar, amglan, amgliccus, amshen, amthend (beside 
etendigidir) show the further spreading of this form of the 
prefix (VKG ii 7). 

The ante-vocalic form an- spread even more widely, and 
tended to oust the various ante-consonantal forms in which the 
prefix lost its identity. A following initial consonant then 
suffered nasalization or lenition. Pedersen says that the initial 
remained or suffered lenition, but, since lenition is irregularly 
marked in the MSS., and nasalization of c t cannot be written 
in Old Irish, it is probable that this analogical an- always 
caused lenition where possible unless it caused nasalization. 
The same treatment appears after com- : cutrummae ' equal 
amount ' beside later comthrom (VKG i 475). There is evidence 
which suggests that nasalization was regular in the early 
period, and lenition later, v. inf. ancretem, ancel (aingcel) 
beside later anchretem. 1 We have then a long list of words 
containing the negative prefix an-, and it is important to 
distinguish among them those in which the prefix has a 
pejorative force, not merely the force of a negative. In Meyer's 
Contributions this was not done, so that many words seem to 
me to be wrongly defined, and Meyer was led to suppose a 
purely intensive prefix an- ' great, very ' which is a ghost. 

I venture, therefore, to arrange the words in two sections, 
based upon this distinction. In the first section (A) the prefix 
has purely negative force, and the meanings will be found in 
Meyer. Words such as anbal l shameless ' (fial), anfad 
' storm ' (feith), where the negative force is not apparent, 
are included here. In the second (B) I have supplied the simple 
words and the meanings, so as to make the distinction clear. 2 


ainby anabbuig, anaccarthach, anaccmaing, anacnata, andeb, 
anaichne, anaichnid, anaicneta, anairchend, anairches, anair- 
ddlta, anairdairc, anairlam, anairlatu, anait, andithes ' sorrow ', 
anannac, anarma, anarmach, anarrachta ' feeble ', anarsaid, 


anbal, anbann (anfann), anbecht, anbil, anblathach ' un- 
princely ' (ZCP 11, 87. 105), anble, anbsaid, anbthech, anbuain, 
ancellide (beside amchiall, eciall), ancretem (Wb. beside 
anchretem, PH), andarbas, andaih, ande, andeon (beside 
amdeon) andess (beside amdess), andichracht, andil, andiles, 
andiuit, andlecht, andliged (beside indliged), andoit, andomuin 
(beside Mod. Ir. eadoimhin), anduine, anduthchas, anduth- 
chasach, anecnaid, anecne, anecoisc, aneim, anennac, aneoil, 
anergnaid, anescaid, anetargnaid, anfad, anbfaitech, anfdlid, 
anfchellach (ainbhchellach), anfechtnach, anfele (cf. anble), 
anfeth (cf. anfad), anfial (cf. anbal), anfine (ainbfine), anfir, 
anfirenach, anfiss (ainbhfhios), anflaith (anfhlaith, cf. 
anblathach), anfobracht (anbobracht, anfabracht), anfochell, 
anfoill (anbfoill, an/oil), anfoillside, anfola, anfholldin, anfollus, 
anforbthe, anforchendach, anforcthe, anforus, anfos ' unrest * 
(ZCP 3, 31. 2), anfot (anbfot), angaisced, angar (beside ingor), 
anglan (beside amglan), angnds, anguss, anidan, animchubaid, 
animmarcide, anindastae, aninne, anmebair, anmence, anmenic, 
anmesarda, anmesc, anmessair, anmin (ainmhin), annsa, anog, 
anord, anordaigthe, anrecht ' illegality ', anrechtaid, anshddal, 
ansaire, anseirc, anshescair, ansicc, anshocair, anshodh, 
anshuairc, antoiscthech, antrend, anuasal, anullam, anumal, 
anurmaisnech, anurraim. 


ad Muck': andd 'ill luck'; dlaig l skill' : andlaig 
' vice J ; sen ' luck ' : anshen ' ill luck ' ; trdth ' time ' : 
antrdth ' inopportune time, untimely event ' ; uain ' time ' : 
anuain ' untimely ' ; uair ' time ' : anuair ' evil hour ' ; 
acra ' suit ' : anacra ' unjust suit ' ; arrachta ' mighty ' : 
anarrachta ' monstrous ' ; bds ' death ' : anbds ' untimely 
death ' ; bert ' deed ' : anbert ' evil deed ' ; bes ' custom ' : 
anbds l evil custom ' ; blod ' fame ' : anblod ' shame ' ; breth 
' judgement ' : anbreth ' unjust judgement ' ; caint * talk ' : 
an-chaint ' speaking ill, defamation ' 3 ; eel ' omen ' : ancdl 
(aingcel) ' evil omen ' ; cindiud l decision ' : ancindiud 


1 wrong decision ' ; wide ' heart ' : ancride (anchroidhe) 
' injustice ' ; ecen ' force ' : anicen ' outrage ' ; iarmairt 
' consequence ' : aniarmairt ' evil consequence ' ; iarsma 
' consequence ' : aniarsma ' evil consequence ' ; mian 
' desire ' : anmian (ainmhian) ' evil desire, passion ' ; ordit 
( prayer ' anordit ' curse ' ; recht ' condition ' : anrecht ' evil 
plight ' ; riad ' course ' : anriad ' evil course ' ; seol ' course ' : 
ansheol ' evil course ' ; smacht ' penalty, control ' : ansmacht 
' injustice ' ; teist ' witness ' : anteist l false witness ' ; tol 
'* will ' : antol ' evil desire '. 

The words listed under B might be subdivided into the 
first six in which the simplex has a connotation of goodness 
or advantage, so that the negative has the pejorative con- 
notation immediately (the type ' luck : ill luck ' ; ' time : 
untimely '), and the remainder in which the negative has the 
pejorative connotation by extension (the type ' deed : evil 
deed ' ; ' desire : evil desire '). To the former may be com- 
pared OE rded ' wisdom, counsel ' : unrsed ' folly, crime ' ; 
untima ' mishap ' : to the latter W. anair ( ill report, 
calumny ' ; G. Untiefe ( abyss ' ; Untier ' monster ' ; Unart 
'' bad conduct ' ; Unwetter ' bad weather '. 

There is a third group of words which contain this prefix 
in its pejorative sense, where the meaning of the simple word 
itself is bad, so that the pejorative prefix has intensive force : 


brath ' treachery J anbrath ( treachery ' 

broid ' oppression J anbhroid ' oppression ' 

cess ' sickness, trouble ' ancess (aingcess) ' sickness, 

trouble ' 

echt ' slaying, violent deed ' anecht ' slaying ' 
ferg ' anger ' anfergach ' angry ' 

fiach ' debt ' ainfhiach ' debt ' 

forlann ' oppression ' anborlann (Hessen), anforlann, 

anfhorlann 4 ' oppression ' 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. H 


forrdn ' attack ' 5 

glond ' violent deed ' 
lettrom ' oppression ' 
macnas ' wantonness 
uabar ' pride ' 
uaill ' pride ' 

anborrdn, anforrdn (Hessen), 

anfhorrdn 4 ' attack ' 
anglond i violent deed ' 
anlettrom ' oppression ' 
anmhacnas ' wantonness ' 4 
anuabar ' arrogance ' 
anuaill ' vainglory '. 

Translators usually render the prefix here by ' excessive, 
great ', and there is no objection to this, except that it implies 
a confusion with the Modern Irish intensive particle an, 
which does not appear in the literary language. In many cases 
the prefix is used merely as a stylistic device for alliteration, 
and is then better neglected in translation. The words ancess 
(LU), anforlann (LL), anglond (LIT), anuabar (YBL 205 b 23) 
are attested in Middle Irish, so that this type is as old as the 
twelfth century. 

A further step was taken by the use of the prefix where the 
meaning of the simple word was not bad, to give the sense 
' excessive ', and so ' bad through excess '. 


ban ' addition ' 

anbharr ' excess, undue 

amount ' 6 

anbhlasadh ' excessive liking ' 4 
anchaitheamh ' waste ' 4 
anchuram ' excessive wprldly 

care ' 4 

anddna ' very bold ' 7 
andochas ' presumption ' 8 
ainshiubhal ' excessive pere- 
grination ' (O'Grady, Cat. 
558, 15) 

ainntes ' excessive heat ' 
(O'Grady Cat. 232. 3) 

tlds ' weakness, gentleness ' antlds ' frivolity ' 4 
trom * heavy ' antrom ' excessive weight '. a 

blasadh ' to taste ' 
caitheamh ' to spend ' 
curam ' care } 

ddna ( bold ' 
dochas ' hope ' 
siubhal ' to walk ' 

tes ' heat J 


It is difficult to decide in some cases whether a word should 
be listed under B or D, but anbhlasadh, andochas, antlds, 
ainshiubhal, ainntes clearly belong to D. In these examples 
the prefix has pejorative force, but in the special sense of 
excess, the germ of which appears in C. The meaning is not 
merely ' great taste ', .' great hope ', etc., but taste or hope 
that are evil through excess. 10 And none of the examples 
listed under D is earlier than the sixteenth century, so that this 
stage in the development can be assigned to the later Modern 
Irish period. 

In the spoken language to-day there is an intensive particle 
an (Munster ana) used with both adjectives and nouns in the 
sense ' very ', ' great '. 'Donovan recognizes it (Gr. 121), 
but observes that it seldom occurs in correct Irish works (ib. 
271). Ttyere is indeed no example in Keating's Three Shafts of 
Death, where various other intensives appear. In the dialects 
it tends to oust all the other intensives, except a Connacht 
form ri which derives from righ- ' royal, splendid ' and has 
become a mere intensive (Finck, Die Araner Mundart ii 16). 
But this Modern Irish particle an differs from the prefix an- 
in two respects. It does not form close composition, for the 
following word retains its accent. Thus Canon O'Leary writes 
it as a separate word : ordog ana theinn ( a very sore thumb ' ; 
ana ghniomh ( a great deed ', Focloir do Sheadna, s.v. ana. 
And it has no pejorative force, but is a mere intensive. 11 

Pedersen identified Modern Irish intensive an with the 
Old Irish and- of andfocul, andlocht, andglondas, which 
became obsolete in the early period. And in this he is mistaken, 
if my explanation of the words listed under D above is correct. 
He would explain all of these, and also those listed under C, 
as compounded with and- (G. ande-). This is probably also 
what Meyer had in mind. 

Apart from the etymology, I think that Pedersen has 
indicated the true explanation of the emergence of the new 
particle (VKG ii 13). Terms of equality in Irish are expressed 
in Irish by the prefix com- which occurs with both nouns and 


adjectives, and causes nasalization in old forms and lenition 
later : cummat ( equal amount ', cutrummae ' equally heavy, 
alike ', comthinol (Wb. 21c7), comthrumma ' equal weight ' 
(SR 5760), comhthrom ( equal weight ; equally heavy, equit- 
able ', comthind s equally painful '. cotomus ' equal measure ' 
is glossed comthomus, Coic Con. Fug. 19. 26. Here a secondary 
division into two words has taken place in Modern Irish, but 
only in the adjectives. Thus comhfhad ' equal length ' in a 
proverb I have heard in Inishmaan : ni hionann comhfhad 
dona mearai nd na treithre do chuile dhuine ' the fingers are 
not of equal length nor are the characters of men alike '. But 
chomhfada (le) ' as long (as) '. 12 It is plain that the relation 
between anchuram, ainnteas and an churamach, an te is the 
same. Pedersen labels the process Biverbierung. It is perhaps 
due to the fact that the adjective, by retaining its jeparate 
accent, escapes the reduction to which non-initial syllables are 
subject in Irish. The time of its occurrence has not been 
established, and the development is not parallel in the two 
forms. While com- (comh-) causes lenition in composition, 
e.g. comhthrom which survives in the senses ' fair, even ', 
there is no lenition in the bisected form chomh trom (le) ' as 
heavy as ' 13 ; and, further, the bisection'after com- is limited 
to adjectives. In the case of an lenition remains, and bisection 
occurs with both adjectives and nouns. The process evidently 
begins with compounds of com-. Since the absence of lenition 
is a characteristic of the bisected forms in the spoken language, 
it is reasonable to suppose that forms without lenition in 
classical Modern Irish texts are already bisected. In Bergin's 
edition of Keating's Three Shafts of Death there are a number 
of examples : muna mbeith go raibhe an drong adubhart 
chomh follus soin ciontach ' unless those I have mentioned were 
so plainly guilty ', 5453 ; go bhfuil an bds chomh doghraingeach 
soin nach foldir dhuinn bheith innill aireach 'na oirchill ' that 
death is so perilous that we must be carefully prepared for 
its coming ', 1186 ; ata si comh doileighis sin ' it is so hard to 
heal ', 2466 ; an tan do bhi a inntinn coimh 14 direach sin ' when 


his mind was so just J , 2988. Further references will be found 
in the vocabulary s.v. comh-. In every case the editor has 
introduced a hyphen and printed the forms as compounds : 
chomh-dograingeach, comh-doileighis, etc., but I suggest that 
the absence of lenition of the initial in the second element 
points to bisection of these forms in Keating's time. It is 
noteworthy, however, that Conry a contemporary of Keating, 
appears to use only the old compound forms. We have a 
printed edition of Conry's Desiderius published in his own 
lifetime (1616). The original edition is a very rare book and 
not accessible to me, but O'Rahilly discusses the point in his 
admirable edition (1941), p. 251, distinguishing three types of 
construction with comh-, and it appears that for Keating's 
chomh doileighis soin Conry would write comhdhoileighis 7 sin 
(type 3), a quite different construction. But it is right to point 
out that O'Rahilly admits having joined words that are split 
into two in the original, when the splitting was ' obviously a 
printer's error ' (Introduction xiv), so that not all examples of 
his types 1 and 2 are clear evidence : (1) einni coimbeag ris ; 
comhdhaingean re hiaronn ; (2) comhmaith 7 as eidir lat ; 
comholc 7 thuillim. Conry never lenites the initial of comh- 
except in the nominal construction with a possessive mentioned 
in note 13 : a chomhmor sin do dhuine uasal ' so great a gentle- 
man as he '. For an the case is different, for there is no example 
in Keating nor in Conry of an as a mere intensive. We have 
seen that an-bhlasadh ( excessive liking ', an-cMram ' excessive 
anxiety ', an-dochas ' presumption ' represent the pejorative 
an-. The earliest references to intensive an that I can cite 
are that of Halliday in his Grammar of the Gaelic Language 
(1808) 59 (he uses an in the Dialogues, pp. 134, 138) and 
those in 'Donovan's Grammar 121, 271, where no 
examples from the literature are given. The earliest attested 
examples I have are those of Finck and O'Leary. 

Finally it may be observed that the old negative and 
pejorative an- has ceased to be a living formative in the spoken 
language. The presence of alternative prefixes expressing 


these two notions may have prompted the restriction of an 
to the use as an affirmative intensive. The common negative 
prefix is neamh-, 0. Ir. neb- (Pedersen VKG ii 8 ; BIA 
Contrib N-O-P 28. 4 ; Dinneen s.v. neamh-). The pejorative 
prefixes that have survived are droch- and mi-, both also well 
established in Old Irish (Pedersen, VKG ii 113; Dinneen, 
s.v. droch- ; Pedersen, ib. ii 10 ; BIA Contrib. M 120 64 ; 
Dinneen, s.v. mi-). This makes it difficult to decide what is 
intended by such spellings as ainfios, anfolldin, anforlann, 
ansaire, ansicc in the MSS. Should an editor be guided by the 
spellings ainbhfios, anborlann, aingcel attested elsewhere, 
or by the lenition in anchretem, ainmhin, anshodh ? Bergin 
seems to have been in doubt as to how the manuscripts of 
Keating should be read, for he prints ainmhian throughout the 
text of TSh., but adds a note that the two best manuscripts 
always have ainmian, ' the usual form in the early seventeenth 
century ' (p. 494). He would probably now adopt ainmian 
throughout. This suggests that/, m escaped lenition until the 
seventeenth century, since the forms were not analogical, an- 
being original before u, m. 15 But b, c, s were probably lenited 
from the Middle Irish period. The spelling ainfios is then 
etymological rather than a re-formation *ain-fhios. But Finck 
records both sends and senvds (Die Araner Mundart ii 25). 
Bergin prints anfhlaith (anflaith, vocab.), anfhochain, 
anfholldin, anfhorrdn in his edition of TSh. In most cases 
the spoken language supplies no evidence. 

The Munster form of the new particle is ana, and may 
perhaps be explained in the same way as seana- for prefixed 
sean- (s. O'Rahilly, Irish Dialects 200). If we assume that the 
additional vowel developed in Munster before the forms were 
bisected, the conditions will have been the same. 

This transformation of a negative prefix into an affirmative 
intensive particle, to which the converse development of 
Fr. personne, rien may be compared, well illustrates one aspect 
of the complex character of the Irish language to which 
Pedersen has drawn attention (VKG i 26), a blend of archaism 


and revolutionary innovation. But parts of the development 
can be observed elsewhere. The semantic change from 
1 excessive ' to ' very ' has parallels in English * awfully 
good ', ' frightfully sorry '. One German word, Unmenge 
' great quantity ', which is ordinarily pronounced with equal 
stress, shows exactly the same history for Germanic un-, even 
to the final bisection of the compound, but it is, so far as I 
know, a unique example. 

There is a Gaulish prefix ande- already mentioned (p. 99), 
which Holder defines as expressing motion to and from, 
intensity and increase : he identifies it with Skr. ddhi < I-E 
ndhi (Altkeltischer Sprachschatz 139. 17). The proper name 
Anderoudus (GIL V 2911) is rendered ' sehr rot ' (ib. 145. 52). 
The prefix appears in Irish in the form and-, and may be 
identified in the words : andfocul ( habitual saying ' ; 
andglondas ' habitual cruelty ' (AL ii 168. 5 == O'Dav. 135) ; 
andlocht ' habitual fault ' (?) (Laud 615, 121, cited by Meyer, 
Contrib.) ; andlonn ' condiment ' ; Andobor ' the river 
Anner ' ; an[d]ainmne ' perseverance ' (LB 261b26). 

Pedersen agrees with Holder about the etymology and 
intensive force of this prefix (op. cit. i 45 ; ii 10). He there- 
fore states the regular Welsh form as an-, which he identifies 
in W. anrheg ' gift ' ; enwyn ' pure white ' ; enwir ' trust- 
worthy ' ; enfawr ' huge ' ; enryfed (enrhyfedd) ' wonderful '> 
enawel ' tempest '. To these examples may be added, subject 
to what is said below (p. 104) : enwaered ' prone ' ; enwaisg 
* lively ' ; enbyd ' dangerous ' ; enchwardd ' laughter ' ; 
enddawd ' conspicuous ' ; anddwl ' affection ' ; enfyged ' wor- 
ship ' ; enrhydedd t honour ' ; enwair ' vigorous * ; annerch 
' greeting ' ; anrhaith ' booty ' ; an/on ' to send '. 16 It may 
be said that Pedersen's rendering of enfawr, enwir, enwyn as 
' sehr gross ', ' sehr wahr ', ' sehr weiss ' seems to derive from 
Owen Pughe, and suggests a connection with the Mod. Irish 
particle an, which we have seen to be of quite different origin, 


but which Pedersen identified with and- and so with the 
Welsh prefix. Pedersen was misled by the resemblance of 
form and meaning, and forced to the conclusion that Ir. and- 
was a Welsh borrowing, since *ndhi should appear in Irish as 
ind. In fact the sense of * very ' is normally expressed in 
Welsh by the prefixes rhy- and tra- (Morris Jones, Welsh 
Grammar 268). It is better to allow *ande as the common 
Celtic form, as Thurneysen does (Hdb. 473). The meaning 
may be intensive-durative. A connection with Gothic anda- 
is possible. 

In Gaulish ande- appears only in proper names, but some 
of these appear to be adjectives : Andebrogius, Andecombogius, 
Anderoudus (Holder, op. cit. 139. 17). In Welsh all the 
adjectives cited above show the prefix in the form en- 9 which 
can of course be generalization of an umlaut-form. But it 
may be that we have here a distinct prefix, and that *ande- 
was prefixed only to nouns. This was the case in Irish so far 
as I can see. Meyer, who like Pedersen confounded Irish 
and- < *ande with the pejorative an- and the Modern Irish 
intensive particle an ' very ', ' great ', which have here been 
shown to derive from the old negative *n- t defines anbrath 
' great treachery ', anbhroid ' great captivity ', and so on ; 
and he gives two examples of an- with adjectives which, if 
correct, would require the sense ' very ', and, coming from 
the early literature, could only be explained by means of an 
old intensive an- (= *ann-, *and-), but both examples are 
errors. The first is an-dith ' very sharp, keen '. amus anaiih 
oirbirech 'a ... reproachful servant ', LL 149a30, but Eawl. 
reads inail for anaiih (Hib. Min. 83. 9) and the meaning is 
doubtful. 17 Meyer cites here also : am so 7 am andithiu 
atdesiu ' ich bin junger und ich bin kiihner (?) als du bist ', 
LU 1573 (IT II ii 213. 18). But the prefix is not admissible 
before a comparative form. The word anaiih is obscure, but 
it is clearly not a compound of *an- ' very ' and aiih ' keen '. 
The form anaihu in grannu anaihu Herend, LL 34a38 is a 
scribal error. Kawl. has the intelligible reading : eitchi inddt 


fuatha Herenn ' more hideous than all the goblins of Erin ', 
riu 4, 100. 35. 

The other supposed early example is due to a wrong emenda- 
tion : an-feig ' very keen ', Fen. 214. 12. But the text actually 
reads annfein : bennaigim in baili reid \ bennaigim gach ni 
annfein ' I bless the smooth place, I. bless everything therein ', 
Book of Fenagh 214. 12, and Macalister confirms the reading, 
correcting only to bennuigim in the second line (Supplement 44). 
Two other words in the Contributions might be claimed as 
examples of adjectives containing the prefix and- as intensive : 
andiaraid ' fierce ', angbaid ( fierce ', but both are of obscure 
origin, and the meaning suits pejorative an- which has been 
admitted above (list B) for Middle Irish. The word anmoltach 
' praiseworthy ', which Meyer may have understood to contain 
an- ' very ', is doubtful, since Laud reads dnmolbthaig (IT iii 
50.12 = 31. 12). 

Celtic ande- plays only a small part in nominal composition 
in Irish, and was apparently not used in adjective forms. The 
intensive prefixes used with adjectives in early (Old or 
Middle) Irish are : ad-, adb-, air- (aur-, er- ir-, ur-), aith-, 
der-, er-, for-, ro- ; and for-, ro- are attested also with nouns 
(forlassair ' great flame ' ; romacdacht gl. superadulta), s. 
Pedersen, VKG- ii 10 ; Meyer, Contrib. s.vv. air-, aith-. 
To these must be added for Modern Irish : fior-, sdr-, ur-, 
and the separate particle an, s. O'Donovan, Gr. 121. But the 
particle is not attested in the literature (cf. O'Donovan, ib. 

One point concerning the bisection after comh- (a chomh-) 
which calls for attention is the absence of lenition. The 
statement of Stewart, cited by Pedersen KZ 35, 443, that the 
separated comh causes lenition in Scottish Gaelic, is not 
confirmed by Calder, Gaelic Gr. 115 or Borgstrom, Dialects 
of the Outer Hebrides 99, so that we may assume that the 
absence of lenition is universal. It is, I suppose, a generaliza- 


tion from cases where lenition was regularly absent (before 
vowels and m) : chomh maith ( as good ', chomh mor ' as great ' 
may have given the lead, for they would be of frequent 
occurrence, and an mhaiih, an mhor may have helped to 
establish the contrary treatment of initials after separated an. 


1 Pedersen discussed the matter, KZ 35, 442, and cited ancretim, Wb. 5bl2 
and four other examples from Wb. as well as four from Ml. in which lenition 
of c is unmarked after this analogical an-. But he shows that lenition after 
com- appears already in Wb., and it appears after an- in PH. I am inclined 
to .regard the examples without lenition as instances of nasalization, which 
cannot be marked for c, t in Old Irish. The word ancel is sometimes written 
aingcel, angcel, so also ancess and aingcess (Meyer, Contrib.), and the spelling 
ancessa, CCF 16. 12 indicates nasalization. 

2 The words in the lists which follow are given as they are spelt by Meyer 
or in edited texts, early and late. Allowance must be made for the fact that 
lenition is often supplied by editors, so that some doubtful points discussed 
later (p. 102) would need to be investigated in the light of the MS. tradition. 
The evidence of Wb. and Ml. is available in Pedersen's great study cited 
in note 1. 

O'Rahilly, Desiderius, vocab. 

Bergin, Keating's Three Shafts of Death, vocab. 

Metr. Binds., gl. 

O'Rahilly, Desiderius, vocab. 

I depend upon Meyer's example, FM vi 2298. 3, where the meaning is 
not pejorative, but Lhuyd has andana ' arrogant, presumptuous ', 
Archaeologia Britannica 316c20. 

- Bergin, loc. cit. Contrast Mod. Ir. eadochas ' despair '. Some words in 
original initial d have developed a negative e- by analogy with eadtrom 
(trom), etc. ; cf. eadoimhin ' shallow ' (doimhin) above. 

9 Bergin, Stories from Keating's History, vocab. 

10 The word ainiongnadh in Desiderius, which O'Rahilly leaves undefined 
in the vocabulary, becomes clear. It means ' excessive admiration ', and so 
Ainiongantus Indte Fein ' Conceit ', * Vainglory ', 2792. 

11 It may be observed that the example cited by Pedersen, VKG ii 10, 
from his collections made from informants in Aran, and characterized as 
' merkwurdig ', is an error : go bhfuil tu an duine tinn ' that you are a very 
sick man ' is impossible. The informant must have said : an dona tinn ' very 
badly sick '. 

2 The old compound survives in the simple sense * equality ' : td siad 
comh-bharamhail ' they are- one as amusing as the other ' (Inishmaan, my 
own collections). 

13 The lenition of the initial in chomh is another matter. It derives from the 
type a chomh-olc sin ' as bad as that ', Pedersen, KZ 35, 443. There is a new 


meaning in the bisected form, for it may be followed by a resultative clause : 
chomh trom (go) ' so heavy (that) '. Irish chomh is then equivalent to 
Latin tarn. 

14 Coimh for chomh may be the editor's spelling. No MSS. readings are 

15 O'Rahilly gives examples of ainmian and ainmhian, Desiderius, vocab. 
s.v. ainmhian. 

16 s. Morris Jones, Welsh Grammar 269, who postulates an original *ndo- 
(Lat. endo-). There may be in Welsh a blend of prefixes *ande- and *eni- 
before nouns, as in Irish before verbs, s. Thurneysen, Handbuch 472-3. 
The prefix *ande- seems to be foreign to adjectives in Irish as in Welsh, 
s. p. 104. 

17 H. 3. 18 agrees with LL, s. Meyer, Contrib. s.v. airbirech. There is a 
noun andithes attested only in the phrase dithes co n-andithes ' joy mingled 
with sorrow ' or perhaps ' success mixed with failure ' (Meyer, Contrib. 
s.v. andithes). The adjective andith may mean ' unsuccessful, unhappy '. 
We should then have an etymology for Mod. Ir. dthas ' joy ' < O. Ir. 
*dithius ' success ' (?), the abstract noun corresponding to dith ' keen '. 


ORIGIN and meaning of this word have been discussed so 
often and so thoroughly that it may seem hardly possible 
to add anything new. Not long ago the late Jarl Charpentier 
devoted a whole book to it (Brahman. Uppsala Universitets 
Arsskrift, 1932), with its full survey of the various theories 
put forward by Indian and European scholars an indispensable 
guide to the student, even though he may find himself in 
disagreement with the solution favoured by Charpentier 
himself. However, it appears that perhaps insufficient 
attention has been paid to the Iranian side of the problem 
which may help in reaching a definite conclusion. 

In a recently discovered Xerxes inscription (" Xerx. Pers. 
daiv", 41 sqq.) there is a recurring phrase " to worship 
Ahuramazda artaca brzmniy ". To all appearances these 
words mean merely " to worship Ahuramazda in proper 
style, in correct fashion ", but opinions vary greatly on their 
grammatical analysis. 1 Most likely brzmniy is the Nom. Sg. 
of an adjective (referring to the subject of the verb " to 
worship ") in -iya from brzmn-, while artaca = artaca is 
either a second adjective Olr. (a)rtanhacd " following Rta " 
(thus Bailey), 2 or an adverb explaining brzmniy, Olr. (a)rtdt 
Jiacd = Av. asdt hacd " according to Rta ". Thus one could 
translate either " following Rta and possessing (associated 
with) the brzmn ", or " following the brzmn in accord with 
Rta ". The translation I had given " holding Baresman 
(twigs) according to the Holy Law (Rta) " does not meet 
the case. The stressing of such a minor detail of the cult as 

1 See Herzfeld, Archaeolog. Mitt., viii, 56 sqq., Altpers. Inschr., 27-35, 
116-18, 287-9 ; Kent, Language, 13 (1937) ; Hartmann, OLZ., 1937, 
146 sqq. ; Nyberg, Eel. Alt. Iran, 367, 478 ; Bailey, Zor. Problems, 87, 229, 
and my remarks, BSOS., x, 506. 

2 However, similar adjectives are formed with -hak- (not -Tiacan-} in 
Avestan where asayhak- occurs. 


the Barasman twigs were would appear to be incommensurate 
with the tenor of the inscription. Brzmn- must have a fairly 
wide and general meaning here ; it has quite rightly been 
compared with the Indian brahman-. Also, the spelling of 
brzmniy in the Elamite and Akkadian versions, pirracmanniya 
and birazammanni, necessitates the reading brazmaniya (in 
preference to barzmaniya). 1 

It has not been noticed so far that Old Persian brazman- 
survives in Middle Persian and Parthian brahm, Pahlavi 
brahm(ak). There is no difficulty about the phonetic develop- 
ment. Olr. (u)rvdzman- (Gathic urvdz9man-, Av. urvdsman-) 
which appears as urwdhm- in Middle Iranian (MPers. urwdhm/ih, 
Pahl. urwdhmamh, etc.) provides a close parallel ; one could 
also cite MPers. emag (Pers. liime) from Olr. aizma- (Av. 
aesma-). The frequent Pahlavi spelling br'hm(k) happily 
leaves no doubt that the Middle Iranian word was pronounced 
brahm(ak), not barhm(ak). 

The Pahlavi word has been discussed by Salemann, Man. 
Stud., 62 (cf. also Man., iv, s.v.), and Zaehner, BSOS., ix, 311. 
According to Zaehner it means (a) garment, (b) manner. 
However, it is used not so much for the actual clothes as for 
their appearance or style. Hence, one would prefer " dress " 
or " costume ". Perhaps the best equivalent in English is 
" fashion " which covers both meanings. 

It may be useful to treat the Manichaean passages in which 
brahm occurs, more fully. 2 As in Pahlavi the word refers to 
clothing : Mir. Man., iii, a 73 (p. 851) " For a short while 
they gladly 3 clothed themselves inwardly with the costume 
(brahm) of joy, but outwardly they were visible in armed 
and warlike appearance (cihrag) ". M 177 V 17 (HR., ii, 90) 
" And lo ! angels brought the soul of Daraw and placed him 
before me, arrayed in the customary dress of kings (shrd'r'n 
brhm 'bdyyn) ". 

1 Cf. Herzfeld, loc. cit. 

2 Unimportant or incomplete passages are not quoted here. 

3 frh' is adverb and belongs to fryh, cf. frhyft, JRAS., 1942, 230, n. 5. 


Here we must pause to consider Parthian abden ('bdyn or 
'bdyyn) which hitherto has been translated as " wonderful " 
(by F. W. K. Mueller, Salemann, and myself), while in fact 
it means (a) custom, (6) customary, wonted. It is the same 
word as Armenian auren-k', MPers. even(ag)* and goes back 
to Olr. *abidaind-. Cf. the following texts : 

(1) Mir. Man., iii, d 65 (p. 864) fr'mwxtyys tnb'r pdmwcn 
'bdyn " he shed the wonted garment of the body (= he died) ". 

(2) Ibid., n 6 (p. 886) pd hnd 'bdyn " through blind 2 
habits ". 

(3) M 523a 5 ['c] [ ( ]ym 'bdyn whxt l s[tyd] " he has freed 
himself of this habit ". 

(4) M 580 R 10 cw'gwn kyc fwg cy ny 'mwxtg u ny 'bdyn 
bwt Jew cy$ pt 'b'myh 'c kyc 'st'n'h " like a rich man who was 
neither used nor wont to take anything on loan from anybody ". 

(5) T iii D iii 270 bwd jyr 'wt frz['ng] nyw 'wt hwnr'w[nd] 
'bdyn 'w'gw[n kw ?] b'dyst'n pd sb kd kyc ny z'nyd byh 'zgd 
" he was clever and wise, brave and skilful. His custom was 
such that frequently he went out at nighttime, unbeknown 

1 even < aifien < aSpen < apSen. Another case of the Middle Persian 
metathesis of -j88- > -8)3- (> -yv-) is provided by the later form of the 
Old Persian word for " palace " whose stem is usually given as apadana-. 
Parthian 'pdn = appadan proves that the OPers. word was appadan- 
(acc. appaddnam), and this is supported by the Biblical pointing appeden 
(appadn-), by Syriac dpa8nd, Ar&b.fadan ; needless to say, OPers. apadana- 
could appear in Parthian only as 'bd'n In Middle Persian appadan- became 
*dpa8an, then *d{$8an. Through the metathesis of -j38- *dp8an became 
*d8pan > dipan > divan ; the last form occurs in Man. MPers. (spelt 
"ywn, Mir. Man., i). The vowels were transposed in Persian aivdn (if 
derived directly from the MPers. form as is likely). A belief that Pers. 
aivdn somehow belonged to OPers. " apadana " was expressed by Herzfeld, 
Iran in the Ancient East, 352. Parth. "dywn (?) and Parth. "wdyn (BSOS., 
ix, 79) are uncertain. 

2 hand = Ormuri hond, Saka hana, Av. anda-, Sogd. and, etc., cf. 
Morgenstierne, Report . . . Afghanistan, 33 ; IIFL., i, 317. Parthian has 
many words which otherwise are met with only in Eastern Ir. dialects, 
cf. e.g. gyr-g'mg, pnd'n (Parachi pandn), frg'w. See also Benveniste, JA., 
1936, i, 202 sqq. Consideration of the Parthian vocabulary supports my 
contention that that language was indeed Parthian and not Middle-Median 
(cf. Mir. Man., ii, 303, n. 1 ; BSOS., x, 501 sq., 508). 


to everybody " (b'dyst'n = Man. MPers. Vyst'n = Pahl. 
bdstdn, cf. Av. bdibistdm). 

(6) M 92, 7 a-b (from an Evangelionig Bdsdh) 
jngyn bwd u t'ryg, mgwng 'bdyn pd shr tcynd 
pd 'wrjwg wdyft 'hynd, u krwgyft cy 'smg'n. 
Dark they were and contentious, brutish in habits they 

roam the world, 
Deceived by lusts, and the trickery of the devils. 

The word mgwng (mgwng-'bdyn, a bahuvrihi compound) 
in the last quoted passage is perhaps too important to be 
passed over lightly. In view of its meaning which seems to 
approach that of " brutish " (or " imbecile " ? " drunken " ?), 
it can hardly belong to Av. magavan-. 1 It has been noticed 
four times in Parthian and once in MPers. where a shorter 
form (mgwri) is employed : 

(1) M 92, 15-* 

sy'ryft pdmwxt 'hynd, tnb'r gnd'g 'wd mgwng 
[p]dmwcn (?) pdngyn, cy b'd b'd pdmwxt 'hynd 
" Clothed in decay : the body, stinking and brutish, 
'Tis a soiled garment that they put on again and again." 

(2) T ii D 116, i, R ii pd dybhr [ ] 'wrjwg [ ] xwmr 
'wd .... 'stft gryw mst m' q[r]'h kw ny bw'h mgwng " Do 
not intoxicate yourself with anger, . . . lust, . . . sleep, with 
harsh . . . ., so that you will not become brutish ". 

(3) M 460b, 12 sqq. mst 'yy 'wd mgwng pd frhy[ft] 'wd 
zystyft, [ns]'wyn (?) pd s'dft sic [']wd 'nd'g cy ['y]m shr ?< Thou 
art drunk and brutish in love and hatred, like a corpse in the 
joys and sorrows of this world ". 

(4) M 87, 14 a -15 a (from the Gowisn-1 Griw-rosan). 
'sm'hycwm dyym b 3 m' bnyd (??) 2 

1 However, if one accepted as true the picture painted by Nyberg of the 
shainanistic Zoroastrians, one could fairly well describe the Magavan 
as an imbecile and brutish drunkard. See Eeligionen des Alien Iran, 147 sqq. 
Cf. Journal of Theological Studies, 1943, 119 sqq. 

2 As I hope to show in an article I am preparing on " Sogdian Tales ", 


tw'nyd'n kwm 'ndr *w 'spynj 'dyn'[d] 

trwm m' kwnyd 'wd mgwn m' bwyd 

But you should not throw dust into my eyes, 

Surely you can admit me to this Inn, 

Do not repel me, do not be so brutal. 

Let us return to the consideration of brahm. In the first 
Manichsean passage quoted above (p. 109) brahm was associated 
with cihrag " appearance, form, figure, face ; nature, seed 99 . 1 
Both words are often found in juxtaposition. Thus in a 
" Crucifixion Hymn ", M 24 E 8 (= M 812 V), '[vw'ryd] 
Jirw 'mwst'n 'w r's[tyft cy\ msyh'h o bwyd 'zd'g ['wd] 'Sn'syd 
pd 'spwryft Jiw r'z o brhm u cyhrg l zwst " Grasp, all believers, 
the Truth of Christ, learn and wholly understand His secret : 
He changed His form and appearance ". The reference is 
to the assumption of human form by Christ, cf. also Mir. Man., 
iii, k 4 (p. 881) Shrd'r 'rg'w wxybyh pdmwcn 'zwst. In a hymn 
addressed to the Father of Light 2 we read (M 679, 27 sqq.) : 
'st'w'dg jywndg o wygr'dg 'wd 'nwsg 'yy o tw nys'n gryw u 
p'dgyrb 'm'h pydr qyrbkr o hwr's'n hwcyhr o brhm *wd cyhrg 
p'dgyrb 'wd z'wr o cy hw pydr ny'g hsyng o ngwstg u wyd'm'sg 
wzrg " You are praised and living, wakeful and eternal. 
Your sign, your Self, your aspect is our beneficent Father, 
the beautiful East, (who is) the form (brahm) and appearance, 

dem bastan means " to juggle, trick ", lit. " to bind someone's sight " so 
as to prevent him from seeing what is happening to him. But the reading 
bnyd is merely conjecture. 

1 The peculiar Parthian h'mcyhrg, Mir. Man., iii, 849, n. 3, is " homo- 
morphic " rather than " of the same substance ". It refers to those particles 
of the divine Light which can be collected in the " Column of Glory ". 
This explains why its Sogdian equivalent "wkrsnyy (krsn = form, shape) 
means "Column of Glory" (BBB., 67; Benveniste, BSOS., ix, 513 n.), 
and helps to understand MPers. xwys~cyhr-yzd t Mir. Man., i, 187, n. 3 
(" the increase of the moon through the Column of Glory "). 

2 It belongs to a series of hymns in which his chief emanations (such as 
the Sun -god and Jesus) are lauded, cf. Waldschmidt-Lentz, Stellung Jesu, 
70 sq., 118 sq. The stereotyped opening formula (up to p'dgyrb) refers to 
the Father of Light. The translation given by Lentz, loc. cit., can hardly 
be justified. 


the aspect and power of the Father, the first ancestor, the 
hidden and miraculous giant ". 1 

In several passages one could translate brahm as " form " 
or " elegant form, gracefulness, charm ". 2 The following 
verses are taken from the hymn-cycle Angad-Rosnan, 
composed by Mar Ammo 3 in the latter half of the third 
century (vii, 12 and 25-6) : - 

'wd wyzmryd 'wd wzwyd, cw'gwn w'r systg 

ky pd 'bd'b hwsyd, u hw brhm wygnyd 

He withers and fades as a broken rose, 

That wilts in the sun, whose grace is destroyed. 

'wd hmg jywhr, cy wysp twxm u [. . .] 

'c tgnbnd wygnynd, u y'dynd 'w 'bn's 

['wd hm]g 'wrjwg, zrnyn 'd hrw brhm 

[ ']dwr, u 'ndyst bwynd pd hw 

The whole of the lives of all races and . . . 

Will swiftly be wrecked and brought to perdition. 

The whole of the lusts, gilded with all their charm, 

fire, will be heaped on it. 

Here we could also mention two compounds, (1) brahmdwend 
<c endowed with brahm " in Mahrnamag, 314, "z'dgwn 
brhm'wynd gryw " Noble, graceful soul ", and (2) wadbrahm 
" possessing bad brahm ", apparently = " scandalizing ", 
in M 177 R 5 (HR., ii, 88) where the evil effects of meat- 
eating are listed, "... fourthly that the soul is sullied, fifthly 

1 I fear it is almost impossible for anyone who is not fairly well versed 
in Manichsean ideas, to understand a passage of this kind. The Father of 
Light, the " first ancestor ", is " hidden ". He is in no way concerned with 
the world where his emanations operate on his behalf; they can thus be 
viewed as his sign or aspect in the world. The words " your Self " restrict 
the application of the opening formula to four divinities, viz. Mother of 
Life, Friend of Light, Third Messenger, and Jesus. " Beautiful East," 
far from being a poetical turn of phrase, is merely (in connexion with the 
preceding word " Self") a complicated way of naming the Third Messenger 
(cf. Waldschmidt-Lentz, Man. Dogm., 546, en xwrsn kyr'n mysyy fiyyy 
en yrywyy). 

2 Cf. Salemann, Man. Stud., 62. 

3 See BSOS., xi, 216, n. 6. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. I 


that it increases lust, sixthly that he (= he who eats meat) 
becomes evil-mouthed, seventhly that 9 w ws'n wdbrhm bwyd 
it (or : he) scandalizes many people, eighthly that the purifica- 
tion of the Pious Gifts is neglected, ninthly that the poor are 
left without alms, etc." 

The last-quoted passage leads up to the moral aspect of 
brahm which sometimes can be rendered by " correct behaviour, 
propriety " or even " morals ". We find it associated with 
xrad, here presumably = " admonition, counsel " (as, e.g., 
Armenian xrat). Thus in M 210 1 : ['bfrygyc xrd 'wd brhm 
'y 'w ywjdr'n sie *wd 'spwrg'r"n prmwd e styd sic o mn pdys 
swst 'wd qmbgyh sic nyzwr 'wd m'ndg hym "And also the* 
other injunctions and morals that are prescribed to the 
Pure and Perfecters (i.e. the Manichaean monks) in them 
I am negligent and deficient, weak and remiss ". Similarly in 
M 174 (Man. Dogm., 555) pd hrwysp xrd 'wd brhm ( yg 'rd'yh 
" through all injunctions and morals of Righteousness (i.e. the 
Manichsean community), the five good commandments of 
Piety and the three noble Seals, etc." 

It is well known that the Chinese Traite Manicheen was 
translated from a Parthian original of which a number of 
small fragments are preserved. They are invaluable for 
determining the meaning of difficult Parthian words, but 
unfortunately still unpublished. Happily brahm occurs in 
one of the fragments, M 349 V 1, s'x brhm nxsg " the branch 
(of the third good tree) is brahm naxsag ". This corresponds 
to Chavannes-Pelliot, Traite Man., 66 [562], lines 11-12, 
" ses branches, les regies imposantes." The Chinese term, 
Hit IB> ace. to Chavannes and Pelliot, loc. cit., n. 2, existe 
dans le bouddhisme, ou il designe les rites, le Jcarman ou kar- 
mavacana. But if we take the Chinese characters separately, 
we would have naxsag = | " majestic, overawing, 
imposing ", and brahm = ^ " righteous and proper 
demeanour, deportment, politeness, ceremony, usages " 
(Karlgren). Hence, brahm naxsag = " impressive demeanour ", 

1 This text was hardly written before the tenth century, cf. BBB., p. 14. 


or " awe-inspiring ceremony ". It seems that brahm refers 
to dignified behaviour (as suited to ceremonial acts) rather 
than to the actual rituals. 

However, while in the case of brahm the Chinese equivalent 
covers the meaning of the Parthian word, the same cannot 
be said of naxsag. In choosing the Buddhist term the translator 
did justice to brahm and probably also to the meaning of 
the whole phrase, but was forced to neglect naxsag. For 
elsewhere naxsag corresponds to English " nice " (in its 
colloquial sense) and sometimes approaches " auspicious ". 
Cf. Mir. Man., iii, b 199 (p. 859) "... he comes to you full 
of love, so you too should receive him as you would your 
own son, and train him well (naxsag) in the art of writing, etc." 
M 177 V 4 (HR., ii, 89) 9 w xyybr' "wsyg w'x[i] kw z['n'm kw] 
d'r'wpwhr bwg wynd'd 'h'd cym nys'n nxsg dyd " he said to 
X.A. : I know that D. has obtained redemption, for I have 
seen an auspicious sign ". M 248 R 1 -{- M 520 V 4, bwy wxs 
nxsg " delightful spices ". M 98/9 ii 28a, jm'n nyw nxsg 
" the hour is very auspicious ". Curious is the chapter heading 
in M 267b V i 3-4, shr pd pnj 'yr nxsg 'styd " the world is 
naxsag = commendably well arranged in five points ", 
where the chapter itself begins in this way : byd w'xtg kw 
shr pt pnj 'yr pd brhm nxsg 'styd " And again he said : The 
world is well arranged in five points as regards behaviour 
(brahm) ". Further on, pd pnj 'yr dwsfryft u rfs 'w shr "synd 
'yw kw xwd'y 'wt s'r[d'r] bzqr bwynd 'wt 'w d'd 'byd'd qrynd 
" in five points unhappiness and ruin reach the world, firstly 
that lords and chieftains become sinners and pervert the law ". 
In view of the evidence for naxsag we may conclude that the 
Parthian author understood brahm naxsag to mean " nicety 
of ceremony, or demeanour ". 

As result of this inquiry we may say that MPers., Parthian, 
and Pahlavi brahm is appearance or form or style in general, 
especially of persons, be it the outward appearance (whence 
" form, gracefulness ; fashion, costume, dress ") or the style 
of behaviour (whence " demeanour, propriety, ceremony "). 


It is a high-toned and slightly pompous word. The texts 
where it is found belong to the period from the third to the 
tenth century. 

It will be readily seen that the meaning thus established 
for Middle Iranian brahm fits also Old Persian brazman- in 
artdcd bmzmaniya (see above, p. 108), " I worshipped 
Ahuramazda behaving (or : acting) in the proper ceremonial 
style in accord with Rta (the eternal Law that dominates 
the world and all its institutions)," or simply " I worshipped 
Ahuramazda in proper style ". 

There is no doubt that Old Iranian brazman- is the perfect 
equivalent of Indian brahman- phonetically. But their 
meanings, too, agree closely. In India the word was narrowed 
to " the ceremonial behaviour and acts of priests at sacrifices ", 
or briefly " rite " ; it was further restricted to " the recitations 
that accompanied and formed part of ritual acts ", whence 
" sacred texts ". It will be noticed that Indianists often 
rendered brahman- with " rites " ; even Roth's " Andacht ", 
i.e. the mental attitude in which the believer approaches the 
divinity, is not far removed from " the correct ceremonial 
behaviour ". If we look at the numerous Rgveda passages 
for which Charpentier gave " Zauber, Zauberhandlung, 
Zauberritus " (pp. 85 sqq.), all we have to do to arrive at the 
correct meaning is to remove the superfluous word " Zauber- ' 
which after all merely puts a somewhat unjustified valuation 
on the religion of the Ancient Indians. The priest brahman- 
is a person who is versed in brahman- = ceremonies and 
rites, cf. Charpentier, p. 9. 

The study of the meaning of brahman- has been greatly 
confused by dragging in Av. bawsman- " Barsom-twigs " 
and the words allied to it. This entailed (1) the ill-founded 
assumption that brahman- was evolved by metathesis from 
an earlier Indian *barhman- (Wackernagel, i, 213; Charpentier, 
60), and (2) a truly phantastic scheme of semantic develop- 
ment, from " bunch of grass or twigs, grass strewn to serve 
as seat, etc.", to the actual meaning of brahman-. It is obvious 


that this derivation cannot be maintained in view of the 
presence in Iranian, too, of a word that in meaning and form 
is identical with brahman-, and which existed side by side 
with Olr. barzman- (Av. bardsman-). Evidently we have 
before us two different stems, which are distinguished by 
their meaning and by the position of the guna- vowel l : 

(A) form, style, ceremony, rites. 

Skt. brahman-, weak stem bfhaspdti-. 
OPers. brazman-, MPers. Pahl. Parth. brahm, Pahl. 

(B) bundle of twigs, bed of grass, pillow. 
Skt. barhis-, upabdrhana, etc. 

Av. bardzis-, Pers. bdlis, 2 Oss. baz, etc. 

OPers. barzman- (in brzmdn' in an Aramaic inscr.), Av. 

bardsman-, Pahl. barsom, Arm. Iw. barsmunk 1 , Syr. Iw. 

bursmd, etc. 3 
Olr. *barzn- (and *brzanaka-) in dialects, see Morgen- 

stierne, IIFL., i, 241 ; ii, 260. Olr. *barzaina- in 

Pers. balm.* 
Armenian barj. 

There is little hope of discovering the ultimate origin of 
brahman- /brazman-. In view of the meaning " form, style, etc." 
which I have tried to establish in this article, it may be of 
interest to point to the combination with Latin forma which 
is due to Osthoff (BB., 24, 113 sqq., especially 132 sq. ; 
cf. Charpentier, 7 sq.). A suitable verbal root can perhaps 
be found in Sogdian Chr. 'mbrz br-, 'brz br- (S.T., i, 24 11 , 
30 13 , 31 11 ) = eTTtcT/ceTTTOjitat, Syr. s'ar, in Manichsean script 
'nfirz fir- (M 1207, 11 = T i a), and Buddh. 

1 Only the more important forms are given here. 

2 The -n of Pahl. bdlisn is due to wrong analogy and merely inverse 
spelling ; differently Horn, Cfrdr. Ir. Phil, i, B, 183. Here also Bal. barzi 
a$c. to Morgenstierne, NTS., v, 41. 

3 P. Thieme, ZDMG., 92, 50 sqq., explains Skt. barsva as a prakrit form 
of this Iranian word. 

4 Possibly brzyn in Parthian, see Sogdica, p. 41. 


'nfirzkr'y = anp a rzkare (VJ., 254, 1337) whicli M. Benveniste 
translated as " introducteur au palais, maitre des ceremonies ". 1 
These words reflect Olr. *ham-brza- and *d-brza-. One could 
mention also Man. Sogdian 'pzn-? possibly = 
whicli may continue Olr. *brzna-. 

1 Gauthiot-Benveniste, Gramm. Sogd., ii, 105. The spelling amfiarz, etc., 
is wrong, -z- is attested in Chr. and Man., -z- and -z- are never confused 
in Sogdian. Therefore, amfi a rz cannot be connected with Av. bardg- or 
Av. bwdg-, nor can OPers. brazman-. Herzfeld, loc. cit., p. 118, confuses 
velars and prepalatals. 

2 The text will be published in an article on " Sogdian Tales ". 


IT seems to me that the most important thought suggested 
by a consideration of the theory of phonemes is one of a very 
general nature, namely that the fundamental concepts upon 
which all sciences are based are incapable of definition. Either 
a so-called " definition " implies a reference to the thing to 
be defined, or it has loopholes for exceptions and is therefore 
not a complete definition. Take for instance a case from 
zoology, say a dog. We can attempt a definition of it as a 
four-footed mammal having certain characteristics, but the 
definition is not complete. It would, I imagine, always be 
possible that an animal might exist having all the 
characteristics that one could put into' a definition, and yet 
which was not a dog, or that an animal might be found 
differing considerably in appearance from the dogs hitherto 
known but which nevertheless was undoubtedly a dog. I was 
once talking to Professor Otto Jespersen on this subject, 
and he told me of a " definition " of a dog which he had 
heard : a four-footed mammal, etc., which is recognized by 
another dog as such. This is conclusive proof that a particular 
animal is a dog, but it is no definition. The " definition " 
in the Oxford English Dictionary is no better : a quadruped 
of the genus Canis. 

One can produce different kinds of dogs to exemplify what 
they are, and one can describe their appearances and habits 
up to a certain point. But this is not the same thing as giving 
a definition. 

To give another example, most, if not all, sciences are 
concerned in some way or other with numbers. Yet numbers 
are not definable except in terms of themselves ; in other 
words they are not definable at all. We think we know what 
the number 2 means, but there appears to be no way of 


defining it without using some such wofd as and or with or 
next which already involves the conception of two. The whole 
of mathematics is therefore based on the unproved assumption 
that the number 2 exists and that people know what it 

Here again we can give plenty of illustrations of numbers 
and explain what can be done with them, but that is not the 
same thing 1 as defining them. Similarly in physics one can 
give examples of colours, but they cannot be defined except 
in terms of themselves or in terms of numbers. 

The fact that all sciences are based upon concepts or units 
which are undefinable, and which therefore cannot be said 
to form a firm foundation, does not mean that scientific 
studies should be abandoned. On the contrary, they should 
be pursued and developed in every possible way, and that 
for an excellent reason : such studies are part of the search 
for truth, part of the task which man is presumably in existence 
to perform. Moreover scientific studies can and do give 
results of value to us, results that work, results which, if we 
do not abuse them, are conducive to the well-being of humanity. 
Owing, however, to the undefinable nature of our units and 
the vagueness of our words (see footnote 1 below), it seems 
to me that we cannot escape from the conclusion that 
" scientific proof " of a thing is not so valuable as many people 
consider it to be. 

General considerations such as these are suggested by 
observations in the science of phonetics as in other sciences. 
We make use of terms denoting fundamental concepts such 
as " words ", " speech sounds ", and " phonemes ", but it is 
found upon examination that no unassailable definitions can 

1 From this expression we see very clearly the truth of L. R. Palmer's 
apt remark (Introduction to Modern Linguistics, p. 82) that " speech is 
nothing more than a series of rough hints which the hearer must interpret 
in order to arrive at the meaning which the speaker wishes to convey ". 
The words same and thing are both undefinable words. We can give synonyms 
for them, but we cannot define them. Yet I assume that you know what 
I mean when I use the expression " the same thing ". 


be given of any of these things. 1 But, as with other sciences, 
we can get valuable results from phonetic science in spite 
of our inability to give precise definitions of these terms. 
Particularly valuable results of applied phonetics are the 
improvement of means of communication between people of 
different nations by speech and by writing. 

Now phonemes, the subject of this paper, are certain 
essential units which form, or appear to us with our present 
limited knowledge to form, the basis of the structure of 
spoken languages. They are also the units that need repre- 
sentation when a language is written alphabetically. I believe 
the majority of those interested in the science of speech are 
in agreement so far. But beyond this we find differences of 
opinion concerning the exact nature of these units we call 
phonemes. So much so that a suggestion has been made 
that we might leave the question of definition at this point, 
and say that a phoneme is any element or family of elements 
of a given language which it is found advisable to represent 
by a single letter in writing. Such a rough and ready manner 
of defining the phoneme will serve practical needs up to a 
point, but there are certain objections to it, as I shall show 

Although I believe phonemes to be undefinable, like the 
fundamental units in other sciences, it is nevertheless needful 
for the purposes of linguistic study to examine in some 
detail the nature of these elements, and if possible to produce 
a so-called " definition " of the phoneme of a more precise 
kind than the one I have just mentioned. 

Before proceeding further it is necessary to point out that 
the phoneme may be viewed in at least two very different ways. 
Some authorities have looked at phonemes in what may be 
called a " psychological " manner. They regard them as 

1 The best definition of a " word " is, I believe, that given by L. R. 
Palmer (Introduction to Modern Linguistics, p. 79) : " the smallest speech 
unit (= constantly recurring sound pattern) capable of functioning as 
a complete utterance." 


" ideas " or " mental concepts ", or whatever may be the 
appropriate psychological term. Personally I feel drawn 
towards this view, 1 but I find it difficult to work with in 
practice. Others have taken a what may be called " physical " 
view of phonemes, regarding them as families of sounds 
actually uttered. This way of regarding phonemes I find to 
give good results in practice, in spite of certain difficulties 
which are to be found in connection with it. A third view 
has been expressed by the American writer on linguistic 
subjects, W. Freeman Twaddell, who considers that phonemes 
have no real existence either " physically " or " mentally ", 
but are merely " abstractional fictitious units " whatever 
that may mean. 

As the " physical " view of the phoneme leads to satisfactory 
practical results in my experience, I will now give you a few 
examples of phonemes considered in this light for, as we 
have already noted, it is possible to give illustrations of 
fundamental units even though we cannot define them. 
These examples will give you a fair idea of what we are talking 
about. After that I will call attention to some of the difficulties 
encountered when we attempt to formulate a precise definition 
of what a phoneme is. 

If one isolates the sounds of g in the words goose and geese, 
one hears them to be different, and one can feel that they 
have different tongue articulations : the second has a fronter 
articulation than the first. But from the point of view of 
the structure of the language the two sounds count as if 
they were one and the same. In the terminology I find it 
convenient to use they are " members of a single phoneme ". 
One of the sounds is the variety appropriate in English to 
a following [u:], while the other is conditioned to the following 
[i:]. The two sounds count as if they were one, and in every 
ordinary phonetic transcription they would be written by 
the same letter. It is obviously unnecessary to complicate 

1 See my paper on Concrete and Abstract Sounds in the Proceedings of the 
Third International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (Ghent, 1938), p. 4. 


a transcription by using two different signs : we use one 
sign, and state or imply once for all that the variety of [g] 
used is always adapted to the vowel which follows. 

The following are some further examples. In French 
(ordinary conversational Northern French) when words 
like boucle, simple occur with a pause after them, the sound 
of the I is voiceless [1] ; it is a sound acoustically very different 
from the ordinary French [1] of loup or aller. But in spite of 
the wide difference of sound no French person thinks of this [1] 
otherwise than as an I ; he probably will not notice any 
difference between these very different sounds unless his 
attention is specially called to it. If he hears the difference, 
he will regard the [1] as a slightly modified [1], a particular 
variety used in this special position. The two sounds [1] 
and [1] thus count in French as if they were one. In our 
terminology we say that they " belong to the same phoneme ". 

In Italian and some other languages our English n^-sound 
occurs, but only in specific phonetic contexts, namely before 
[k] and [g] ; it is used in these contexts to the exclusion 
of [n]. Thus the n's in the Italian words banca and lungo 
are pronounced [rj], and an Italian never uses an ordinary 
[n] in such a situation. He is not like a Russian who uses [n] 
before [k] and [g] as well as in other positions. The result 
is that an Italian whose attention has not been called to the 
fact is unaware that the sound of n before [k] and [g] is in 
any way different from that of any other n. To him these 
nasal consonants are one and the same, and for all linguistic 
purposes they count as if they were one and the same the 
sounds [n] and [rj] are " members of the same phoneme " 
in Italian. (They are not so in English or in German.) 

The examples given above are of consonantal phonemes. 
There are likewise cases where easily distinguishable vowel 
sounds have to be grouped together and count linguistically 
as if they were one and the same. Very notable cases of this 
are found in Russian, where the qualities of vowels vary 
considerably according to whether they are next to " hard " 


or " soft " consonants. For instance the [a] of ['jabbka] 
(flftjiOKO, apple) differs noticeably from that in ['jajt/ek] 
(HIUHK, box). Russian shows differences of this kind 
better than any other European language, but examples 
are also to be found in French, Spanish, Danish, 
and to some extent English. There is, for instance, the well- 
known case of " [e] moyen" in French, which is undoubtedly 
not a separate phoneme ; it, so to speak, takes the place of 
" [e] ferme" in non-final syllables: the two vowels of ete 
are not the same, the first being the "'[e] moyen", a sound 
intermediate between close [e] and the opener sound [e]. 
In Danish the [a] in Sand [san'] (sand) is noticeably different 
from that in Sang [sarj'j (song), a more retracted variety 
being used before [rj]. In Spanish [e] preceding [r] is opener 
than in other positions ; for instance the first [e] in fuerte 
is opener than the [e] in mes. In my kind of English the [ei] 
of stay is not the same as that in station, though for linguistic 
purposes the two sounds must obviously count as if they 
were one two members of one phoneme. 

Examples like those quoted above give a rough idea of 
what a phoneme is. And you will see incidentally that 
different members of the same phoneme can never be used 
for the purpose of distinguishing words. You cannot for 
instance change one Italian word into another by substituting 
[n] for [rj], or distinguish French words by substituting 
[1] for [1]. Words are distinguished by phonemes and not by 

Now I want to put before you a few propositions for your 
consideration, to which, as it seems to me, serious attention 
must be given before we can understand more definitely 
what the term "phoneme" can mean. 
* * * 

Proposition 1. It is necessary to give a special restricted 
meaning to the expression " a language " when speaking of 
the phoneme. We cannot take the term " a language " with 
the signification generally given to it, which is, I suppose, 


some typical form of speech together with various other 
forms diverging from this. In my view a theory of phonemes 
can only be based upon the speech of one particular person. 
Other speakers of the same " language " may use different 
sounds, they may distribute their phonemes differently, and 
they may even have a different number of phonemes. I will 
give a couple of examples to illustrate the kind of thing 
I mean. 

1st example. In South-Eastern English as I speak it 
there is no difference in sound between horse and hoarse ; 
I pronounce them both [ho:s]. But in Scotland and many 
parts of England the words are differentiated by different 
vowel sounds : in Scotland [hors] and [hors], in the West of 
England [hois] and [hoois]. Whether you make this distinction 
or not, you are speaking the English language in the general 
use of the term " language ". But in considering the nature 
of the phoneme these two ways of pronouncing must, in 
my view, be considered as belonging to two different languages. 
Whatever view you may take of the phoneme, you cannot 
get away from the fact that in these words some speakers 
use two different phonemes while others use only one. 

2nd example. Here is an example from French. There 
are, as is well known, several shades of a-sound used in 
French. Some French speakers use two well-defined shades, 
a " front " [a] and a " back " [a] for distinguishing certain 
words, e.g. moi [mwa] and mois [mwa], fois [fwa] and foie 
[fwa], la [la] and las [la]. Others, however, do not distinguish 
these or any other pairs of words by means of different 
varieties of a-sound. We are therefore forced to the con- 
clusion that some Frenchmen have two a-phonemes and 
others only one. 

For reasons such as these I submit that when we speak of 
" a language " in discussing the nature of phonemes we must 
confine ourselves to the pronunciation of a particular speaker. 
In fact I think we should go even further, and restrict our- 
selves .to the pronunciation of a particular person speaking 


in one particular style, since the pronunciation of someone 
talking rapidly is often different from what he would use 
when saying the same words slowly. 

Proposition 2. This brings me to my second proposition, 
which is that the only kind of speech that can be reduced to 
phonemes at all is a consistent style of utterance. Many 
people's way of speaking is to some extent erratic, words 
being sometimes pronounced in one way and sometimes in 
another, apparently at random without any assignable 

Erratic pronunciation may often be observed in the speech 
of people who have lived in different parts of a country, in 
different regions where the same " language " (in its broad 
sense) is spoken, e.g. people of Scottish parentage who have 
lived for a long time in Southern England and have what is 
called a slight Scottish accent. They may for instance be 
erratic in their way of saying such a word as coat, giving it 
sometimes the pure vowel sound characteristic of Scottish 
speech or sometimes a more or less diphthongal sound approxi- 
mating to that used in the south. Their vowel in this and 
similar words is unstable. Similarly they may sometimes 
use the Southern English short [u] in such a word as book, 
and sometimes the Scottish sound. They may sometimes roll 
their r's before consonants and sometimes not, and so on. 
It would appear that erratic speech due to mixture of dialect 
is particularly prevalent in the. U.S.A. 1 

1 For instance in American Speech, December, 1941, p. 291, we find that 
a certain speaker is recorded as pronouncing the second syllable of America 
in one place with a vowel written [se] and in another with a vowel written 
[ei], while the first vowel of guarantee is written [e] ; this speaker evidently 
uses varieties of [s] and [se] before [r] indifferently, i.e. the variants are not 
conditioned in any way by phonetic context. Again, according to a tran- 
scription on p. 42 of Phonetic Transcriptions from " American Speech ", 
edited by Jane Dorsey Zimmerman, 1939, the pronunciation of a 
well-known radio speaker is shown to be erratic in the sound given 
to stressed er ; it is recorded in that transcript sometimes with the symbol [3], 
sometimes with [oe] and sometimes by a special sign [3*] meaning a retroflexed 
variety of the sound denoted by [3]. 


Erratic pronunciation also arises from a mixture of the 
different styles of speaking that one uses the formal precise 
style, the rapid colloquial with it's multitude of contractions 
and assimilations (" telegraphic " style in which one suppresses 
or slurs over everything that is not essential to intelligibility 
in conversation), and intermediate styles. 

I submit that it is quite impossible to devise any system 
of phonemes that will apply to erratic pronunciation that 
phonemes can only be established in a consistent form of a 
language such as Paul Passy's " prononciation familiere 
ralentie " (slow conversational style) or possibly in some kinds 
of formal style. Eapid conversational speech is generally 
erratic, and cannot be reduced to phonemes ; and mixed 
dialect cannot be reduced to phonemes for the same reason. 

The examples of phonemes already given show that the 
whole idea of the phoneme is to consider as a single entity 
two or more distinct sounds the use of which is conditioned 
by phonetic environment. We cannot, in my view, make a 
phoneme also include sounds which are not so conditioned, 
such as the sounds of a speaker who pronounces the word 
coat sometimes with a Scottish vowel and sometimes with 
an English one. Moreover, if one takes a " psychological " 
view of the phoneme, it is evident that one cannot assume 
that one speaker aims at exactly the same sound as another ; 
the phoneme can therefore only appertain to the pronuncia- 
tion of a single speaker and one whose pronunciation is 

If it is true that everyone's speech is erratic in some degree, 
we must still further limit the signification of the term 
" a language ", and take it to mean the speech of an imaginary 
" average " person speaking consistently in a particular style. 

Proposition 3. My third proposition is that a system of 
phonemes should as a general rule be based upon the pro- 
nunciation of single isolated words and not upon connected 


speech. I have to assume that you know what the word 
" word " means, though as in the case of other fundamental 
units I believe it to be impossible to give a definition of it 
which is not subject to exceptions. It has often been pointed 
out that there are no interruptions in " speech-chains " 
that we do not pause between words except for a special 
purpose, e.g. to take breath, or at the ends of sense-groups. 
Apart from these pauses the stream of speech-sounds is 
continuous. Phonetic texts have been published by Sweet 
and others, in which the words were run together, in order 
to demonstrate this. But the fact that there are no pauses 
between words does not mean that there are never any 
indications of word division in continuous speech. There 
often are such indications. 1 My attention was first called to 
this fact by noticing a transcription somewhere in Sweet of 
the expression well-to-do, which he wrote ['welto'duu], and 
I realized at once that the first two syllables were pronounced 
quite differently from the word welter which he would have 
equally transcribed ['welte]. On examining the question 
further it became clear to me that, not only were lengths 
involved as in this case, but that connected speech may 
contain sounds which are not found in isolated words, and 
that consequently if we try to evolve a system of phonemes 
from connected speech we may have to admit a larger number 
of phonemes than in a system based on single words. 

The type of difficulty we should be confronted with is 
illustrated by the expression plum pie. There is no pause 
after plum, but if for this reason the words were written 
together as one [plAmpai], the writing would be ambiguous. 
In the absence of some written indication of word division, 
this sequence might be read as plump eye. There are two 
main differences in pronunciation between these two 
expressions. One is 'that the [m]'s are of different length ; 
the other is that the second has an unaspirated [p], while in 

1 See my article The Word as a Phonetic Entity in Le Maitre Phonetique, 
October, 1931, p. 60. 


the first the [p] is aspirated, at any rate in Southern English 
speech. There may also be a subtle difference in the point 
of incidence of the stress. Accordingly, if we were to base 
a system of phonemes on connected speech, and if the idea 
of the phoneme is restricted to sound-qualities only (and not 
extended to include length and stress), we should find our- 
selves in the position of having to consider aspirated and 
unaspirated [p] as two separate phonemes in English. 

To give another example from English, in colloquial speech 
we sometimes find nasalized vowels at word junctions without 
any adjacent nasal consonant, as in the expression 
[aidouwontit] (reduced form of / don't want it). If this style 
of speech were to be taken into consideration, the nasal 
diphthong [ou] would have to be regarded as a phoneme of 
the language. But it is clearly not advisable to regard it 
thus both on the ground that the sound occurs without an 
adjacent nasal consonant solely in connected speech, and 
on the ground that the style of talking in which such a form 
would occur would almost certainly be erratic. 

Examples can be found in foreign languages illustrating 
the same kind of thing. For instance the vowel and con- 
sonantal values of the French written u, i.e. the sounds 
generally transcribed [y] and [q], belong to a single phoneme 
if we classify on the basis of words ; for the two sounds 
never occur in identical situations in French words, 
and consequently the substitution of one sound for 
the other is never used as a means of distinguishing 
one word from another. Whether a written u is pro- 
nounced [y] or [TJ] in a word is merely a matter of 
rule, of phonetic context. 1 If, however, phonemic grouping 

1 Always [y] finally and before consonants. ^Before vowels the rules 
are as follows : 

(1) Always [TJ] before [i], e.g. lui, pluie, instruit. 

(2) Always [q] before other vowels if a single consonant precedes, e.g. tuer, 

(3) Always [y] before other vowels if two consonants precede, e.g. cruel, 

PHILO. TRANS. 1944. K 


were to be determined by connected speech, these two sounds 
would have to be considered as separate phonemes, since 
sequences like [yi], and single consonant + [ys], occur at 
word junctions : compare [tye] (tu es), [tu;e] (tuait), [i(l)layisi] 
(il Va eu id), [ilaqisi] (il a Tiuit scies), [ilapyiale] (il apuy oiler), 
[ilapqi] (il appuie), [tyie] (tu y es), [tqio] (tuyau). 

It would seem too that voiced and voiceless [r] would have 
to be considered as two separate phonemes in French, if 
connected speech were to be taken into account. For, as 
Paul Passy once pointed out, 1 many French people distin- 
guish between [trwaptitru] (trois petits trous) and [trwaptitru] 
(trois petites roues), the latter expression being pronounced 
with a completely voiced [r]. 

Another example illustrating the kind of thing I mean is, 
I believe, to be found in Portuguese. Those who know that 
language will remember that when [1] terminates a word it 
has a " dark" or velarized value [1], but that an ordinary [1] 
of medium resonance is used when a vowel follows in the 
same word : for instance mil (a thousand) has a " dark " [1], 
quite different from the French [1] in mille, but militar has 
an ordinary [1] like the French one. These two sounds there- 
fore belong to a single phoneme if we classify on the basis of 
single words. It appears, however, that in connected speech 
dark [1] may occur when, a word ending with an I is followed 
by a word beginning with a vowel. I find, for instance, the 
transcription [tal ities] (for tal inter esse) and other similar 
examples in Viana's Portugais. 2 This indicates that ordinary [1] 
and velarized [1] would have to be regarded as separate 
phonemes if we made our phonemic classification of these 
Portuguese sounds on the basis of connected speech. 

In some languages, of which German is the most note- 
worthy, it appears necessary to base the phonemic classifica- 
tion on something less than the word, and to regard certain 
prefixes and suffixes as separate word-like entities. The average 

1 Sons du Fran$ais 7 , p. 61. 

2 Teubner, Leipzig. 


North German speaker appears to have an unusually distinct 
feeling for word division, and he evidently feels too that these 
prefixes and suffixes are very much like separate words. 
It is for this reason that the glottal stop p], although of 
very frequent occurrence, need not be held to constitute 
a phoneme at all. It is simply, as Trubetzkoy pointed out, 1 
a signal that there is a division between words or to show that 
there is a prefix. The point is illustrated by such a word as 
Wohnort, which is pronounced in North German with p] 
between the [n] and the [o], thus [Vo:n?ort], because the 
second part of this compound is Or t ; there is no such word 
as [Voi-nort]. Similarly Verein is pronounced in North 
German as [fer'^ain] because ver- is one of the prefixes which 
North Germans apparently feel as separate from whatever 
follows. The prefix her-, however, (if it is a prefix) is one 
which presumably they do not feel in this way, herein and 
other similar words being pronounced without p] : [he 'rain], 
[he'runter], etc. 

The question whether the German tcA-sound is to be held 
to be a separate phoneme from the " back " sounds of ch heard 
in such words as Bach and Buck depends upon the word-like 
nature of the diminutive suffix -chen. If this is regarded as 
a " word " or as a word-like entity, we find that [9] and the 
various shades of [x] should in all probability be assigned 
to a single phoneme. For [9] is then found to occur in definite 
phonetic contexts from which the back [x] -sounds are 
excluded. 2 The words ending in -chen include some in which 
this suffix is immediately preceded by a back vowel, such as 
Frauchen. This shows that if -chen were not considered as 

1 Grundzuge der Phonologie, p. 244. 

2 The rules for the use of the two sounds are (1) [x] only occurs at the 
ends of syllables, and then only when an [a], [o] or [u] sound precedes, 
(2) [9] occurs in all positions other than these, namely (a) at the beginnings 
of syllables and (6) at the ends of syllables when a front vowel or a con- 
sonant precedes. Examples are : (1) Bach, hoch, Buck, (2) (a) Chemie 
[90: "mi:], Chrysalis ['gryizailis], archaisch [ar'a:ij] and all the words ending 
with the termination -chen, (b) ich, tiichtig, recht, durch. 


a sort of " word " [x] and [9] would have to be classed as 
separate phonemes : Kuchen ['kuixen] and Kuhchen ['ku'^en] 
are distinguished by these consonants. It is therefore only 
by regarding -chen as a separate word that v we can assign 
them to the same phoneme. (In writing one could show 
the word division by inserting a hyphen : if [x] were used 
to denote the phoneme, these words could be distinguished 
phonetically as ['kuixen] and ['kui-xen].) l 

We may put the matter in another way. If we did not know 
where German words began and ended, we should be obliged 
to class [x] and [9] as separate phonemes, since it is possible 
for such sequences as [-oixryi-] and [-o^ry:-] to occur in 
connected speech. 

So much for the proposition that the basis for any theory 
of phonemes is to be found in the pronunciation of single 
words (or word-like entities) and not in connected speech. 
* # * 

Proposition 4. The term " phonetic context " should be 
held to comprise not only the nature of neighbouring sounds 
but also lengths of sounds (both of the sounds under con- 
sideration and those near by in the sequence), the stress of 
syllables and, in the case of tone languages, voice pitch. 
I mention this because Bloomfield and others in America 
have used a different terminology, employing the term 
" phoneme " to mean anything that may serve to differentiate 
one word from another a defensible terminology, but not 

1 An exceptional word is Wacholder [vax 1 older] (juniper). Our theory 
concerning [x] and [9] can only be maintained on the supposition that in 
this word the [x] is held to terminate the first syllable in spite of the absence 
of glottal stop before the [o]. It is, however, said (e.g. in The Advancement 
of Science, vol. iii, No. 9, 1944, p. 17) that only such hypotheses as are 
compatible with all the known facts are valid, and as soon as a single fact 
is found to be incompatible with it, the hypothesis, and maybe with it 
a whole theory, must be dropped. Ought we therefore to take it that the 
unusual form of the single German word Wacholder causes the collapse of 
the theory that [x] and [9] may be assigned to a single phoneme, and with 
it the possible corollary that the whole of the theory of phonemes must 
fall to the ground ? I think not. 


that intended as far as I know by the originators of the 
phoneme theory. I find it preferable to treat length and voice 
pitch separately, since they too are subject to variations 
conditioned by phonetic context, so that parallel to the 
theory of " phonemes " there are separate theories of what 
may be termed " chronemes " and " tonemes ". (There does 
appear to be any analogous theory applying to stress.) 

# # * 

Proposition 5. Except possibly in certain very uncommon 
special cases it is absolutely inadmissible that a sound should 
belong to more than one phoneme. For instance, it will not 
do to say, as has been suggested to me by one colleague, that 
[rj] is generally a separate phoneme from [n] in English, but 
should be considered as belonging to the [n] phoneme in ink 
[ink]. I maintain that if these sounds belong to different 
phonemes in sing [sin] and sin, they must be held to belong 
to separate phonemes wherever they may occur in the language. 
Any other supposition appears to me to involve insuperable 
difficulties : one of them is that [m] might with equal right 
be considered to belong to the [n] phoneme in lamp, since 
such a sequence as [lanp] is impossible in English. 

The possible exceptions are (1) when one phoneme overlaps 
another (as French [o] and [oe]), 1 (2) where there is no more 
reason to assign a sound to one phoneme rather than to 
another (as Japanese [dz] in the syllable [dzu] which from 
the phonetic point of view may be assigned either to the [d] 
or to the [z] phoneme). 2 

# * * 

Proposition 6. The sounds belonging to a phoneme must 
have some sort of fairly near relationship to each other. 

1 The retracted variety of [oe] used before [r], in such a word as heurter 
[osrte], has much the same quality as the advanced variety of [o] used in 
such words as note [not], possible [posibl]. 

2 The Japanese now treat the sound as belonging to the [z] phoneme, 
and write it in all words with the letter z in their new Romanic orthography. 
Formerly, for reasons connected with dialectal speech and the history of 
the language, they used to write it with z in some words and d in others. 


Thus it would be clearly undesirable, as has often been pointed 
out, to assign [h] and [rj] to the same phoneme in English 
on the ground that the two sounds never occur in the same 
phonetic context : they are too different from each other, 
the only feature they have in common being that they are 
both continuants. It is, however, apparently impossible to 
lay down any general rule as to what the degree of relationship 
must be : one has to be guided by the conditions in each 
particular language. It is worth while pointing out, however, 
that the relationship may be either acoustic or organic. Thus 
the different values of [h] in English are organically very 
distinct ; they differ from each other in the same sort of way 
that one vowel differs from another, though acoustically the 
differences are hardly perceived On the other hand the 
acoustic difference between the French sounds [1] and [1] 
is very considerable though the organic difference is merely 
a matter of making the vocal cords vibrate or leaving them 

The question as to what constitutes sufficient " relationship " 
has, I think, to be left unanswered. We have to use common 
sense about it. And I submit that this admitted vagueness 
does not in any way invalidate the theory of phonemes or 
diminish its usefulness. 

Bearing all these propositions in mind, we can formulate 
a sort of definition of a phoneme in these terms : a family of 
sounds in a given language which are related in character and 
are used in such a way that no one member ever occurs in a word 
in the same phonetic context as any other member. 

This is a " physical " definition. It is, however, important 
not to forget that it may be found possible, as already 
mentioned, to regard phonemes in quite a different light, 
namely on what may be called a " psychological " basis. 
We might take them to be abstract sounds that one so to 
speak aims at producing but which in actual utterance come 


out as one sound in one context and another in another 
context. This was I believe the original idea of Baudouin de 
Courtenay, the first exponent of the phoneme theory. How- 
ever, for the ordinary purposes for which the theory of 
phonemes is employed, i.e. in analysing languages, teaching 
their pronunciation and devising phonetic transcriptions and 
orthographies, I find the " physical " conception suggested 
by the above definition to be of greater practical use. 

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During the year 1943 the Society held four ordinary 
meetings, when papers were read as follows : 26th February, 
by Dr. W. B. Henning on ' The Disintegration of Avestic 
Studies ' ; May 14th, the Anniversary meeting, by Pro- 
fessor C. L. Wrenn on ' The Value of Spelling as Evidence ' ; 
22nd October, by M. A. Mirambel on ' Tenses in Modern 
Greek with special reference to the Aorist ' ; 26th November, 
by Professor W. J. Entwistle on ' The Chronology of Slavonic '. 
The Society is indebted to the School of Oriental and African 
Studies for its hospitality on all these occasions. 

As Mr. J. R. Firth found that he had still less time available 
for the editorship of Transactions, Professor H. W. Bailey 
took over this duty for the time being and in May became 
Publications Secretary. Transactions, 1941, was distributed 
late in the year ; since then the 1942 issue has been dis- 
tributed and that for 1943 has reached the final proof stage, 
and material for the 1944 issue is being collected ; the printing 
of Dr. Palmer's book has reached an advanced stage. 

During the year six ordinary members and five libraries 
joined the Society ; with one resignation, five lapses of 
membership, and losses by death, the total membership stood 
at the end of the year at 176, including nine members in 
enemy or occupied countries. 

The Society has lost by death, among others, an Honorary 
member, the distinguished Danish grammarian, Professor 
Otto Jespersen, and Mr. Leonard C. Wharton, who was 
Honorary Secretary from 1915 to 1930. 


Joint Honorary 

12th May, 1944. 


COUNCIL 1944-1945 


Vice- Presidents 


PROF. F. W. THOMAS, C.I.E., M.A., PH.D., F.B.A. 


C. T. ONIONS, C.B.E., M.A., D.LITT., LITT.D., LL.D., F.B.A. 




Ordinary Members of Council 




M.A.. PH.D. 

MRS. C. M. CREWS, M.A., PH.D. 

J. R. FIRTH, M.A. 


A. MASTER, C.I.E., M.A. 
L. R. PALMER, M.A., Pn.D. 

Hon. Treasurer 

PROF. R. L. TURNER, M.C., M.A., LITT.D., F.B.A., Haverbrack, Bishop's 
Stortford, Herts. 

Hon. Secretaries 
PROF. H. W. BAILEY, M.A., D.PHIL., F.B.A., Queens' CoUege, 

(for Publications) 

MISS A. WOODWARD, M.A., Royal Holloway CoUege, Englefield Green, 


MESSRS. BARCLAY & CO., LTD., 1 PaU Mall East, S.W. 1. 

Entrance Fee, 1 Is. ; Subscription, 1 Is. a year (due 1st January), 
or 30 for life, less 6s. for each year of life already completed. 

Publishers of the Transactions, Messrs. David Nutt (A. G. Berry), 212 
Shaftesbury Avenue, W.C. 2. 

Publishers of the Publications and the Society's Dictionary : Oxford 
University Press, Amen House, Warwick Square, E.G. 4. 


(Corrected to April, 1945) 

%* Members are reminded that it is only by their active assistance that 
the List of Members can be kept up to date. They are earnestly requested 
to call attention to existing errors, and to give timely notification of changes 
of address, titles, and degrees to the Hon. Secretary, Miss A. WOODWARD, 
M.A., Royal Holloway College, Englefield Green, Surrey. 

An asterisk prefixed to a name denotes Life Membership, 
f Awaiting election. 


HUJER, Professor 0., Universita, Praha I, Czechoslovakia. 

PEDERSEN, Professor H., Gersonsvej 69 n , Copenhagen-Hi., 

SOMMERFELT, Professor A., Royal Norwegian Ministry of Educa- 
tion, Kingston House, Princes Gate, S.W. 7. 


1940. AQUILINA, Professor Joseph, B.A., LL.D., Ph.D., c/o Royal 
University, Valletta, Malta. 

1929. ATKINSON, B. F. C., M.A., Ph.D., College House, Grange 

Road, Cambridge. 

1931. BAILEY, Professor H. W., M.A., D.Phil., F.B.A., Queens' 

College, Cambridge. 

1901. BANKS, Mrs. M. M., 19 St. Margaret's Road, Oxford. 
]934. BAZELL, C. E., M.A., Magdalen College, Oxford. 
1944. BECK, A. K., LL.D., 12 Buxton Avenue, Caversham, 

Nr. Reading. 

1930. BERGIN, Professor 0., Ph.D., D.Litt., 10 Grosvenor Place, 

Rathmines, Dublin. 

1934. BERNARD, THEOS., B.A., LL.B., The Lotos Club, 110 

West 57th St., New York City, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1935. BLACKMAN, Mrs. E., M.A., Uppercross, Storey's Way, 


1934. BOSTOCK, J. Knight, M.A., B.Litt., Ph.D., 5 St. Margaret's 

Road, Oxford. 

1926. BRAUNHOLTZ, Professor G. E. K., M.A., 78 Old Road, 
Headington, Oxford. 

1936. BROOKS, K. R., M.A., D.Phil., Merton College, Oxford. 

1944. BRYANT, Professor Margaret M., Ph.D., Dept. of English, 

Brooklyn College, Brooklyn, New York, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1932. BRYSON, J. N., M.A., Balliol College, Oxford. 

1935. BURROW, Professor T., M.A., Ph.D., Balliol College, 


1936. BUTLIN, R. T., B.A., c/o The British Council, Cairo, Egypt. 
1932. CAMPBELL, A., B.A., B.Litt., 11 Marston Ferry Road, 

1943. CAMPBELL, I. M., M.A., Balliol College, Oxford. 

1945. CASSON, L. F., M.A., Ph.D., King's College, Strand, 

W.C. 2. 
1936. CAWLEY, A. C., B.A., c/o British Council, Cairo. 


1920. CHATTERJI, S. K., M.A., D.Lit., 16 Hindusthani Park, 

P.O. Baliganj, Calcutta, India. 
1928. CHOTZEN, T. M., Litf.D., 4 Meloenstr., The Hague, 

1945. CHRISTOPHERSEN, P. H., M.A., Ph.D., 20 Belsize 

Crescent, N.W.3. 

1923. COLLINSON, Professor W. E., M.A., Ph.D., 58 Alderley 

Road, Hoylake, Wirral, Cheshire. 
1902. CRAIGIE, Professor Sir William A., M.A., LL.D., D.Litt., 

Ridgehurst, Christmas Common, Watlington, Oxon. 
1939. CREWS, Mrs. C. M., M.A., Ph.D., Girton College, Cam- 
1935. DAHL, Professor Torsten, Universitetsparken, Aarhus, 

1945. *DANIELS, F. J., B.Sc. Econ., 4 Cheviot Ct., Luxborough 

St., W. 1. 
1934. D'ARDENNE, Miss S., B.Litt., 57 rue J.-B. Colyns XL, 

Brussels, Belgium. 
1934. DAUNT, Miss M., M.A., 73a Elsham Road, Kensington, 


1939. *DAVIES, H. Lloyd, Dinnle, Gardden, Ruabon near 


1924. DAWKINS, Professor R. M., M.A., Exeter College, Oxford. 
1913. *DAY, Miss M., M.A., D.Lit., 15 Elgin Court, Maida Hill, 

W. 9. 
1934. DICKINS, Professor Bruce, M.A., The University, Leeds 2. 

1932. *DILLON, Professor M., M.A., Ph.D., Wisconsin University, 

Madison, U.S.A. 

1938. DUNN, C. W., C.I.E., M.A., Manting House, Meldreth, 

1937. EARLS-JENKINS, R., M.A., D.Ed., F.I.L., 89 Lexham 

Gardens, Kensington, W. 8. 

1938. EDWARDS, Professor Evangeline D., D.Lit., School of 

Oriental and African Studies (Far East Dept.), 
9-22 Sussex Square, W. 1. 

1933. EDWARDS, Professor W. M., B.A., The University, 

Leeds 2. 
1944. ELLIOTT, F. S., 89 Alton Road, Bournbrook Road, 

Birmingham 29. 
1938. ELSTON, C. S., M.A., Ph.D., Woodlands, High Molewood, 


1940. ELWELL-SUTTON, L. P., B.A., BM/DKAB, W.C. 1. 
1932. ENTWISTLE, Professor W. J., M.A., 12 Fyfield Road, 


1931. EVANS, E. D. PRIESTLEY, Dudlow, Roselands, Sidmouth, 


1932. EVERETT, Miss D., M.A., Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. 
1930. EWERT, Professor A., M.A., Trinity College, Oxford. 

1933. FIRTH, Professor J. R., M.A., 25 Boxwell Road, Berk- 

hamsted, Herts. 


1944. FOSTER, I. LI., M.A., University of Liverpool, Liverpool 3. 

1936. FRASER, Professor J., M.A., 4 St. Michael's Mansions, 

Ship Street, Oxford. 
1912. GABRIELSON, Professor Dr. A., Djursholm, Stockholm, 

1910. GARDINER, A. H., M.A., D.Lit., F.B.A., Upton House, 

Wonston, Sutton Scotney, Hants. 

1934. GARMONSWAY, G. N., M.A., 83 The Green, Ewell, 


1912. GIRVAN, R., Ekadasha, Cleveden Gardens, Glasgow, W. 2. 
1926. GOUDY, A. P., M.A., 84 King Street, Cambridge. 

1945. GRADON, Miss P. 0. E., M.A., 14 Antrim Grove, Belsize 

Park, N.W. 3. 

1906. *GRATTAN, Professor J. H. G., B.A., The University, 
Liverpool 3. 

1944. GREEN, Miss H. A. C., Koyal Holloway College, Engle- 

field Green, Surrey. 

1941. GREEN, Miss M. M., M.A., 36 Lower Belgrave Street, 

S.W. 1. 

1945. *GUTHRIE, Eev. M. A., 35 Woodside Close, Amersham, 

1944. HAMILTON, Mrs. J., Ph.D., 77 Ladbroke Grove, W. 11. 

1942. HARLEY, A. H., M.A., 65 Aldenham Avenue, Eadlett, 


1935. HARMER, Miss F. E., M.A., The University, Manchester 13. 
1925. HARTING, Professor P. N. U., Lit.D., Euterpestr. 115B, 

Amsterdam (z), Holland. 

1939. HATTO, A. T., M.A., Loughton Manor, Nr. Bletchley, 


1893. *HEATH, Sir Henry F., K.C.B., K.B.E., Brown Tiles, 
Guestling, Nr. Hastings, Sussex. 

1940. HENNING, Walter, Ph.D., 38 Radegund Road, Cambridge. 

1937. HEYWORTH-DUNNE, J., B.A., D.Lit., 49 Belsize Court, 

N.W. 3. 

1944. HILDITOH, K. R., 32 Butts Road, Swan Bank, Penn, 
Wolverhampton, Staffs. 

1941. HORNER, Miss I. B., M.A., 7 Carill Gardens, Fallowfield, 

Manchester 14. 

1936. JOHNSTON, R. C., M.A., Doc. Univ. Strasbourg, The Red 

House, 60 Iffley Road, Oxford. 

1913. * JONES, Professor D., M.A., 3 Marsham Way, Gerrard's 

. Cross, Bucks. 

1936. JONES, D. M., M.A., Exeter College, Oxford. 

1923. JOPSON, Professor N. B., M.A. (St. John's College, 
Cambridge), Postal Censorship, Edge Lane, Liver- 
pool 7. 

1941. KENT, Professor R. G., Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, 
The Graduate School, Philadelphia 4, Pa., U.S.A. 

1937. LATHAM, R. E., M.A., 26 Court Bushes Road, Whyteleafe, 



1936. LEGGE, Miss M. D., M.A., B.Litt., 115 Banbury Road, 

1940. LEWIS, Bernard, B.A., Ph.D., 8 Brondesbury Court, 

Willesden Lane, N.W. 2. 
1931. LLEWELLYN, Professor E. C., M.A., B.Litt., Brynawel, 

Talbot Road, Llantrisant, Glam. 

1931. LORIMER, Lt.-Col. D. L. R., C.I.E., 2 Brockswood Lane, 

Welwyn Garden City, Herts. 

1940. McCLEAN, R. J., Dr. Phil., M.A., Vinga, Parkway, Gidea 

Park, Essex. 

1936. MclNTOSH, A., M.A., A.M., University College, Swansea. 
1945. MACK, Miss F. M., B.A., Ph.D., King's College, Strand, 

W.C. 2. 
1936. MACKIE, Professor W. S., M.A., Drumoak, Greenfield 

Road, Kenilworth, Cape Town, S. Africa. 

1933. MARCKWARDT, A. H., M.A., Ph.D., University of 

Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.A. 
1943. MASSEY, W. Devereux, British Legation, Stockholm. 

1939. *MASTER, A., C.I.E., M.A., 346 Clanricarde Gardens, W. 2. 

1940. MAVROGORDATO, Professor J., M.A., Exeter College, 


1900. MORLEY, Professor Edith J., 96 Kendrick Road, Reading. 
1943. MUNDY, C. S., B.A., School of Oriental and African 

Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 
1914. MUNRO, J. J., O.B.E., M.C., M.A., Authors' Club, 

2 Whitehall Court, S.W. 1. 

1932. NOBLE, Professor P. S., M.A., The University, 

1932. NORMAN, Professor F., M.A., 2 Tower Cottages, 

Wavendon, Nr. Bletchley, Bucks. 
1926. NORTHUP, Professor C. S., 407 Elmwood Avenue, 

Ithaca, N.Y., U.S.A. 

1934. O'LouGHLiN, J. L. N., M.A., 40 Sheldon Avenue, N. 6. 
1913. ONIONS, C. T., C.B.E., M.A., D.Litt., Litt.D., LL.D., 

F.B.A., 7 Staverton Road, Oxford. 

1932. ORTON, H., M.A., B.Litt., Dept. of English Language, 
The University,' Sheffield 10. 

1936. PALMER, L. R., M.A., Ph.D., Cross End, Wavendon, 
Nr. Bletchley, Bucks. 

1931. PIDCOCK, W. W., B.A., Tollington School, Muswell 

Hill, N. 10. 

1930 POPE, Miss M. K., M.A., Doc. Univ. Paris, The Cottage, 
Garford, Berks. 

1932. POTTER, Professor S., M.A., B.Litt., Ph.D., The University, 

Liverpool 3. 

1945. RANDLE, H. N., M.A., Phil.D., 5 Queen's Road, Rich- 
mond, Surrey. 

1931. READ, A. W., B.Litt., 38 West 12th Street, New York 11, 
N.Y., U.S.A. 


1931. KHYS, Miss 0., M.A., Gwynva, Barton Lane, Headington, 

1917. RICHARDSON, G. H., 164 Rye Hill, Newcastle-on-Tyne. 

1932. RICHARDSON, L. J. D., M.A., University College, Cardiff. 
1902. *RICHARDSON, W. R., Cheselton, Withdean Crescent, 

Brighton 6. 

1932. Ross, A. S. C., M.A., The Old Homestead, Winslow, 

1936. SEATON, Miss M. E., M.A., 18 Parks Road, Oxford. 
1945. SCOTT, N. C., B.A., B.Sc., School of Oriental and African 

Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 
1944. SHEARD, J. A., Ph.D., 58 Park House, Welwyn Garden 

City, Herts. 
fSmpMAN, G. R., 107 West 4th Street, Muscatine, Iowa, 

1943. SIMON, W., Ph.D., 13 Lisbon Avenue, Twickenham, 

1934. SMITH, W/Cr. A. H., B.A., Ph.D., D.Litt., Middle Farm, 

Alstone, Beckford, Glos. 

1934. SMITHERS, G. V., M.A., c/o Hertford College, Oxford. 
1936. STEWART, Professor J. A., C.I.E., M.C., M.A., LL.D., 

17 Avenue Road, Bishop's Stortford, Herts. 
1936. STONE, Miss L. W., M.A., Ditton Cottage, Thames Ditton, 

1943. SWITHINBANK, B. W., C.B.E., M.A., 466 Loose Road, 

Maids tone. 

1939. TAYLOR, W., M.A., 12 Sharia Okasha, Orman, Egypt. 

1922. *THOMAS, E. J., M.A., D.Litt., University Library, 


1923. THOMAS, Professor F. W., C.I.E., M.A., Ph.D., F.B.A., 

Limen, Bodicote, Nr. Banbury, Oxon. 

1929. TOLKIEN, Professor J. R. R., M.A., 20 Northmoor Road, 

1935. TRITTON, Professor A. S., M.A., D.Litt., School of Oriental 

and African Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 

1944. TROUBRIDGE, Lt.-Col. Sir St. Vincent, Bt., M.B.E., 

65 Highgate West Hill, Highgate, N. 6. 

1934. TUCKER, Miss S. L, M.A., Braeside, 86 Woodland Road, 
Bristol 8. 

1924. *TURNER, Professor R. L., M.C., M.A., Litt.D., F.B.A., 

Haverbrack, Bishop's Stortford, Herts. 

1932. TURVILLE-PETRE, E. 0. G., B.A., Bosworth Hall, Nr. 

1936. TURVILLE-PETRE, Mrs., B.A., B.Litt., Somerville College, 


1944. URWIN, K., M.A., Doc. Univ. Paris, University College, 

1937. VAN PATTEN, N., Stanford University Libraries, Stanford 

University, California, U.S.A. 


1936. VOCADLO, Professor 0., Ph.D., Universita Komenskeho, 

Anglicky Seminar, Safafikovo nam. 1, Bratislava, 

1920. WARD, Professor IDA C., B.Litt., D.Lit., School of Oriental 

and African Studies, University of London, W.C. 1. 
1908. WEEKLEY, Professor E., M.A., 30 Marine Terrace, 

Criccieth, Caernarvon. 

1943. WESANDER, E., 16 Lawn Eoad, Belsize Park, N.W. 3. 

1931. WEST, Miss C. B., B.A., M.Litt., Ph.D., Koyal Holloway 

College, Englefield Green, Surrey. 

1945. WHITE, Miss B. M. J., M.A., Westfield College, at St. Peter's 
Hall, Oxford. 

1936. WHITEHEAD, F., M.A., D.Phil., Dept. of French, The 

University, Manchester, 13. 

1937. WHITELOCK, Miss D., M.A., St. Hilda's College, Oxford. 
1912, WILLIAMS, Professor R. A., M.A., Ph.D., D.Litt,, 

1 Cranmer Road, Cambridge. 

1933. WILLOUGHBY, Professor L. A., M.A., Ph.D., D.Litt., 

Briarclough, Cross Oak Road, Berkhamsted, Herts. 

1934. WILSON, R. M., M.A., The University, Leeds 2. 

1945. WOLEDGE, Professor B., M.A., Speen Lodge, Wendover, 

1914. WOOD, A. C., M.C., M.A., 48 St. Albans Avenue, 

Chiswick, W. 4. 

1928. *WOODWARD, Miss A., M.A., Royal Holloway College, 

Englefield Green, Surrey. 

1930. WRENN, Professor C. L., M.A., King's College, W.C. 2. 
1918. WRIGHT, Professor H. G., M.A., Fern Bank, Victoria 

Avenue, Bangor, N. Wales. 


1908. ABERDEEN. University Library. 

1922. ABERYSTWYTH. National Library of Wales. 

1925. ANN ARBOR, Mich., U.S.A. General Library, University 

of Michigan. 
1927. BASEL, Switzerland. Universitatsbibliothek. 

1932. BERKELEY, Cal., U.S.A. University of California Library. 
1932. BIRMINGHAM. University Library, Edmund Street. 

1944. BRUSSELS, Bibliotheque Royale, c/o Belgian Board of 


1943. BRUSSELS, University Library, c/o Belgian Board of 

1929. BRYN MAWR, Pa., U.S.A. Bryn Mawr College Library. 

1945. CAIRO. British Institute. 

1886. CAMBRIDGE. Trinity College Library. 

1929. CAMBRIDGE, Mass., U.S.A. Harvard College Library. 

1934, CARDIFF. The Library, University College of South Wales 

and Monmouthshire. 
1902. CHICAGO, 111., U.S.A. Newberry Library, 60 West 

Walton Place. 
1945. COPENHAGEN, The Royal Library (Danish Legation, 

London, on behalf of). 


1918. DUBLIN. National Library of Ireland. 

1936. DURHAM, N. C., U.S.A. Duke University Library. 

1933. EDINBURGH. University Library. 

1936. GENT, Belgium. Rijksuniversiteit te Gent, Seminarie voor 

Indo-europeesche Linguistiek (Professor G. van 
Langenhove), Lange Meire 16. 

1933. GLASGOW. Mitchell Library. 


1925. HANOVER, N.H., U.S.A. Dartmouth College Library. 
1915. IOWA CITY, Iowa, U.S.A. The Library, State University 
of Iowa, Library Annex. 

1934. ITHACA, N.Y., U.S.A. Cornell University Library. 
1943. JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, University of the Wit- 

1927. KEIJO, Chosen (Korea), Japan. Keijo Imperial 

University Library. 
1936. LEIDEN, Holland. Leeskamer voor Linguistiek, Univer- 

siteits-Bibliotheek, Rapenburg 70-4. 
1943. LIEGE, University Library, c/o Belgian Board of 


1945. LIVERPOOL. University Library. 
1943. LONDON. Oxford and Cambridge University Club, 

71 Pall Mall, S.W. 1. 
1929. LONDON. University of London Library, W.C. 1. 

1943. LOUVAIN, University Library, c/o Belgian Board of 


1936. LUND, Sweden. Universitets-Biblioteket. 

1932. MADRAS, India. The Treasurer, Madras Christian College. 

1874. MANCHESTER. Christie Library, Manchester University. 

1914. MANCHESTER. John Rylands Library, Deansgate. 

1929. NEW HAVEN, Conn., U.S.A. Yale University Library. 

1944. OSLO, Norway. Universitetsbiblioteket, c/o Royal 

Norwegian Ministry of Education. 
1932. OXFORD. The Taylor Institution. 

1932. PARIS, France. Bibliotheque de 1'Universite a la Sorbonne. 
1929. PHILADELPHIA, Pa., U.S.A. University of Pennsylvania 

1925. PRINCETON, N. J., U.S.A. Princeton University Library. 

1933. ST. ANDREWS, Fife. University Library. 

1933. SAN MARINO, Gal., U.S.A. Henry E. Huntington 
Library and Art Gallery. 

1937. SHEFFIELD. The University Library. 

1933. SOUTHAMPTON. University College Library. 

1900. TORONTO, Ont., Canada. University of Toronto Library. 

1937. UPPSALA, Sweden. Kungl. Universitets Bibliotek. 

1929. WASHINGTON, D.C., U.S.A. Library of Congress. 


1939. LINGUISTIC SOCIETY OF AMERICA, Yale Graduate School, 
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A. 







Members should have received the following volumes in return 
for their subscriptions for the years in question : 

1931 Transactions 1925-1930. 

An Old Italian Version of the Navigatio Sancti Brendani, 
edited by E. G. R. Waters. 

1932 Transactions 1931-32. 
Transactions 1917-1920, Part II. 

1933 Transactions 1933. 

Athelston, A Middle English Romance, edited by A. Mel. 

1934 Transactions 1934. 

1935 Transactions 1935. 

The Influence of Low Dutch on the English Vocabulary, 
by E. C. Llewellyn. 

1936 Transactions 1936. 

1937 Transactions 1937. 

1938 Transactions 1938. 

1939 Transactions 1939. 

1940 Transactions 1940. 

1941 Transactions 1941. 

1942 Transactions 1942. 

1943 Transactions 1943 (New members also 1940 and 1941). 

1944 Transactions 1943 (New members also 1942). 

1945 Transactions 1944 (New members also 1943). 

1946 (to date) Transactions 1945. 

The Hon. Secretary will be obliged if Members will notify 
of any omissions in distribution. 












Asica (H. W. BAILEY) . . . . . . 1 

Etudes Iraniennes (E. BENVENISTE) . . . 39 

Some Dravidian Words in Sanskrit (T. BURROW) . . 79 
Basic English as in International Language (W. E. 

COLLINSON) ........ 121 

Sogdian Compounds (!LYA GERSHEVITCH) . .137 

Two Central Asian Words (W. B. HENNING) . . 150 

Dialect Studies (J. A. SHEARD) ..... 163 

Some New Ideas on the Structure of the Indo-European 

Parent Language (ALF SOMMERFELT) . . . 206 

Secretaries' Annual Report for 1944 .... 213 
The Philological Society's Balance Sheet, 1944 . . 214 
List of Members, corrected to March, 1946 . . i-viii 


THE following pages are intended as a small contribution 
to the vexed problem of the people called As. By means of 
a selection of linguistic material it is sought to establish 
that the ancestors of the modern As of Ossetia in the Caucasus 
spoke a language so similar in vocabulary and, in certain 
significant innovations, in morphology and syntax to the 
languages of Chorasmia, Sogdiana, the Khotan kingdom, 
and the modern Pasto of Afghanistan that a period of linguistic 
contiguity of the As with those peoples or some of them must 
be assumed. Since the earliest Sogdian texts may be dated 
to about the second century A.D. and the Sarmatian names in 
Greek inscriptions of the second century A.D. show the peculiar 
innovations of the modern As language (see Max Vasmer, 
Iranisches aus Sudrussland, in the Streitberg Festgabe, 1924), 
at which time the As language and the Sogdian had each 
attained a clear individuality, it will be necessary to place 
the period of contiguity considerably earlier, perhaps by some 
centuries. If then we assume that in the third century B.C. 
the ancestors of the As were in contact with Chorasmians, 
Sogdians and the ancestors of the speakers of Pasto, a reference 
to the well-known passage of Strabo (book 11, chap. 8, on 
the Massagetai and Sakai) is inevitable. He stated there in 
speaking of the Skuthai : /xaAtora 8e yvwpi\ioi yeydracrt 
TOJV i>ojLtaSa>v ot rovs "EXXrjvas a<f>\6fjLVoc rrjv BaKTpLaviqv, 
" AGIOI /cat UcKjiavol /cat Td^apot /cat Za/capauAot, ' the best- 
known of the nomads have been those who took Bactria 
from the Greeks, Asioi and Pasianoi and Tokharoi and 
Sakarauloi.' In the Asioi we may see the Asiani of Pompeius 
Trogus' history (prologus to book 42) reges Thogarorum 
Asiani ' the Asiani, kings of the Thogari '. At about the 
same period the linguistic evidence would place the ancestors 
of the As in contact with the Sogdians. The conclusions of 
the historian G. Vernadsky, in spite of some rather unreliable 

PHILO. TRANS. 1946. B 


combinations, that the As and the Asioi were the same 
(Ancient Russia (1943) 83-4) would be confirmed by the 
linguistic material. See also now (for bibliography) 
0. Maenchen-Helfen, The Yiieh-chih Problem Re-examined 
(JAOS 1945, 81), in which much uncertain is mingled. 

A note should be added on Pasianoi, assuming the text 
to be correct. W. W. Tarn (Greeks in Bactria and India, 
292 ff.) had occasion to refer to the Pasianoi (equated with 
the Parsioi) and Parsiana TroAt? in Greek sources. He knew 
of the * Persian ' name and concluded (p. 293) that the Parsioi 
of Apollodoros, and of Ptolemaios, who placed them in the 
Paropamisadai, were a branch of the Persian people. But 
another tribe also seems to have used a name *parsava. 
G. Morgenstierne has shown (Acta Orientalia 18. 138 ff.) 
that the name pasto very probably continues a word *parsavd 
and he has identified this name with the Parsioi, recognizing 
in them the ancestors of the modern speakers of Pasto. 
We should then have Asioi and Pasianoi in contiguity, as 
we can trace connexions between the language of the As and 
the Pasto languages. 

The name As here used requires a brief explanation. The 
usual ' Ossete, Ossetic, Ossetia ' are derived from a 
Russianized Georgian word ovs-et-i ' land of the Ovs '. This 
Georgian Ovs- corresponds to the As, As of Muslim sources, 
the ' Azia, where are the Caspian Gates ' of Konstantinos 
Porphyrogennetos, Old Russian yas-, with Russian secondary 
y-, Hungarian jdsz (Gombocz, Ossetenspuren in Ungarn, 
Streitberg Festgabe), Chinese jfcf |jg A-su of the Mongol 
period. Of the thirteenth century travellers Piano Carpini 
(1245) has Alani sive Assi and Rubruquis (1253-4) Alani 
sive Aas. losafat Barbaro in the fifteenth century referred 
to the ' Alans who in their language are called As ' (see the 
full quotations in Yulian Kulakovskij, Alani, 1899). The 
speakers of this As language now use the words A si and the 
adjective Asiag of their neighbours the Balkars in Balkaro- 
Kabardia whence they themselves withdrew comparatively 
recently (V. Miller, Ossetinskie Etiudl III chap. 1 ; Max 


Vasmer, 2)ie Iranier in Sudrussland). Digor Asi, Iron Asl 
is < *asya- or possibly *arsya- (for -i, -I, see s.v. ddesnl). 

I have used As throughout as nearer to the indigenous 
name instead of the Russo-Georgian ' Ossetic ' but the word 
Ossetic will be more familiar from its use in Iranian books. 
The reader may therefore prefer to substitute Ossetic for As 
as he reads. L. M. Melikset-Bekov proposed to use Os and 
Osia (in Yugo-Osetia (1924) p. 252). 

The following material is necessarily not exhaustive. 
Knowledge of Sogdian and Khotanese, still more of 
Chorasmian, of which some 3,000 words are known but not 
yet published, is still very incomplete. Similarly Parthian 
material is only partly published. The Parthians were a sub- 
division of the Aparnoi (Parnoi) and it is their language which 
the Manicheans adopted for their religious mission (see A. 
Ghilain, Essai sur la langue parthe (1939) 8 ff.). It is then an 
eastern Iranian dialect (rather than Median, as has sometimes 
been contended, see P. Tedesco, JAOS 63 (1943) 153, and 
contrast W. B. Henning, BSOS 10. 501-2), and must be 
considered in any discussion of Sogdian and the cognate 

The material is arranged alphabetically. The abbreviations 
will all be familiar to students of things Iranian. 

1. ayiindin, dyust ' to cover ' ; dyust, D. azyunst 1. adj. 
covered, 2. sb. storey, room, plur. ayustitde ' buildings ' 
(translating otVoSo^cu in Mark 13.1). Further d-yiid, D. ayodae 
1. ' garment,' 2. ' muscle.' Iron faeWndin, D. faelundun ' to 
dress, adorn' is derived by G. Morgenstierne (NTS 12. 267) 
< *parigund-, comparing Ormun paryun- ' to dress '. 

Sogd. Bud. "ywS (*ayo) ' covering, avarana ' Vim. 15, 
pywnt- ' to uncover ' P 6.83, ny'wSn l garment ' VJ 93, 
nywnt- ' to wear ' VJ 93, pty'wS ' covering ' Dhuta 105, 242 ; 
Man. nywSn ' garment ', ptywS- ' to cover ' (Henning, BBB 
129, 132) ; Chr. nywdn- ' garment ', ptywst- ' covered ' 
(F. W. K. Muller, Sogd. Texte I 16.9, II 92). Khotan. -gun-, 


27) ; (Bud. ptflyw not 
Man. ptryy ' honour ' 

-gusta-, in uysgun-, *uysgusta- ' to uncover ', hamgun-, 
hamgusta- ' to cover ' (BSOS 10. 579), pajun-, pajusta- ' to 
cover ' (BSOS 8. 132) < *pati-gund-. Pasto dyunddm, dyustdl 
' to dress ' (Morg. EVP 9, where Munjani, ParacI and Ormurl 
forms are given). 

2. arise. I.D. 'blessing, greeting', adj. drfay&g 'blessed', 

< *d-fraya- or *d-friya-. 

Sogd. "pryw (Letters I 1, III 1 
*pati-fraya-, Chr. ptfiy ' honour ') 
(Henning, BBB 132) beside "prywn (Letters V 1, VII 1) ; 
Bud. "prywn ; Man. "frywn, 'frywn, MidParth. 'frywn, 
MidPers. 'pryn, NPers. dfarin. On the Khotanese dvun-, 
aim- : orata-, see BSOS 10. 907. 

3. auazin, au&st, D. auazun beside cudzln, cuazun ' to 
dam up ', duazaen ID ' sluice '. 

Sogd. Bud. "w'z "p ' pond water ', Vim. 130 ; Man. "wzyy 
' lake, pond ' (Henning, Sogdica 51 and Addenda, BSOS 
11. 471). Henning compared also Armen. auazan ' pond ' 
(cf. BSOS 6. 593), and has also recognized Bud. "w'zh ( lake ' 
in P 9.30 (BSOS 11. 471). In the Persian Geography, Hudud 
al-'Alam (folio 4a ; ed. Minorsky 56, 185) is listed the dvdzah-i 
baikand ' the swamp (batixah) of Paikand ' of the region of 

4. selxinc', D. selxiy ' knot ' < *grandya-. The groups 
br and gr developed variously. Thus 1. br > rv, arv ' sky ' 

< *abra- ; 2. br > Iv, selmnin ' to cut ' < *brm- ; 3. br > rf, 
aerflg, D. serfug ' brow ' < *bruka-. Similarly 1. gr > ry, 
ser-yom, D. seryon ' load ' < *grdma- (Morg. NTS 12. 263) ; 
aeryiu, D. seryeu ' muscle, vein ' < *gmiva-, cf. Pasto grewa, 
grawa ' collar-bone, collar ' < *gmiva- (Morg. EVP 24), Sogd. 
Bud. yryw- ' body, self ' ; Man. yryw ' self, soul, body ' 
(Henning, BBB 126) ; Chr. yryw with y dotted to indicate * 
not e ; V. Miller had thought of comparing Old Indian kravis-, 
which left e : i unexplained (GIP, Ossetisch 35) ; dry, D. dry 
' sharp ' < *tigra-. 2. gr > ly, aly ' finger-tip ' < *agra- ; ady, 
D. ily, ily&, selyae- ' disgust ' with selysed ID. ' disgust/, adj. 
' disgusting ', selyog ID., ilyog D. adj. ' disgusting ', aelydzinod, 


D. aelyasdzinadse ' disgust ' < *arg-, Av. dr9yant-, epithet of 
daozanha : Yast 19. 44 drdyata haca duzanha, and of flies ; 
Sogd. Bud. 'r/nt (P 2. 235), used in connection with a butcher. 

E. Benveniste (ad loc.) compared NPers. aryand, -ah ' angry, 
greedy ' and rendered the Avestan and Sogdian ' greedy '. 
Probably ' disgusting ' would be better. 3. gr > Ix selxoi 
' pestle ', selxui ' spindle-handle ', see below p. 36. The -nc' corre- 
sponds to D. -y, as elsewhere ndz to D. ndz and y in findz, 
D. findz, fiy ' nose ', without the nasal kudz, D. kui, plur. 
kuitse beside D. gen. sing, and numerative kuyyi, but gen. in 
kudzi baga ' name of a herb ' ; ssaedz, D. insaei ' 20 '. In As the 
phonematic opposition (familiar in Georgian) between ejective 
(supraglottal) consonants k' (palatalized c) c' t' p' and aspirate 
(subglottal) consonants k (c) c t p replaces the Old Iranian 
unaspirated k 6 t p. Usually aspiration supervened, but if 
for any reason, such as final position or a preceding s, the 
aspiration was anticipated, the ejective consonant is found. 
Hence here c' < 6y in final position, but in aecaeg < *ha6ya-ka- 
' true ' c < 9y. Old Iranian an -f consonant is variously 
modified 1. anc > dnc ;> ondz: fondz ' 5 ' < *panca ; 2. an 
>in: findtses, D. findtaes ' 15 ', tindzin, D. itindzun 'to 
stretch ' < *6onf- ; note also D. maenki, maenk'asi, maengaei, 
mengi, mink'i, mingi ' small '. The group -any- differs, see 
below under fxinse. For By > c, cf. also xselc, D. xuselcaB 
1 food ' < *hvar-6ya- (Av. x v arsda ' food ') and bale ' journey ' 

< *br9yu- from bar- ' to ride '. 

Sogd. Bud. yr'ns 'bond' Vim. 50, Dhuta 45, 234, 289 

< *gran6ya- (Morgenstierne apud Henning, BBB 63, 

< grandi-) ; Yidya-Munjani yum ' knot ' < *graBya y Yazg. 
y 9 raw9 ; Bal. garanc < *gran9acl, NPers. (dial.) yil(a)c 

< *gr6aci (Morg. IIFL 2. 213). ZorPahl. gryh NPers. girih 
' knot '. Khotan. grantha-, gramtha-, grratha may be borrowed 
from Sanskr. grantha-. For further Iranian connections, see 
Morg. EVP 27 s.v. yard. 

5. sencoi, D. asncoinse ' rest ' < *ham-cydn-ya- ; sencdin, 
aencad, D. gencayun ' to rest, cease ' ; sencon ID. ' easy, 
convenient ' ; cddseg ' slow ' < *6yata- (Morg. NTS 12. 267). 


Sogd. Bud. 'nc'nh ' cessation ' (Benveniste on P. 2. 131), 
'nc'y- ' to cease ' (P passim). Av. sdta- ' at rest, happy ' 
ZorPahl. sat, NPers. sad. 

6. serdu, D. serdo l hair ' < *dmu-. 

Sogd. Bud. zw- (0. Hansen, ZII 7. 89, Benveniste, JRAS 
1933, 49) with z < 8r. Khotan dro (gen. sing, druai), drauka- 
(Konow, NTS 11. 55), also plur. drrauta (BSOS 10. 597) ; 
drrdva-, dru- in compounds ; drrau nauhna ' on the point of 
a hair ' translating Sanskr. vdldgra- (Suvarnabhasa-sutra, 
P 3513, 70 r 2 = Khotanese Texts I 247) ; drruka- (BSOS 
11. 291, no. 16). Oramri dri (Morg., IIFL 1, 392) ; NSogd. 
(Yaynabi) d*rau (H. Junker, Yaghnobi-Studien I 128). 

7. seryse D. ' mud, slime' <*graya- or *griya-. 
Khotan. gnha- ' clay ' (Siddhasara 152 r 5, v 1, rendering 

Tib. hjim-pa ' clay ') with the -ha suffix which is found also 
in guha- { cow '. Adjective grrena bdjindnd (P 2893, 223) 
' in a clay(?) vessel ' (see BSOS 10. 584). Sogd. Bud. yr'yk- 
Vim. 25 ; Man. yryk (Henning, BBB 126) ; NSogd. (Yaynabi) 
yirik * dust ' (H. Junker, Yaghnobi-Stidien I 9). For ry < gr 
see above sdxinc\ 

8. sexsinseg, D. dexsinsengae c dove ', D. aexsinseg (Pam. 
2. 114), aertse sexsinsegi ' three doves ' Pam. 2. 88 < *axsainaka- 
' the blue-grey one '. 

Khotan. asnai ' dove ' (Siddhasara 17 r 5), asnuha ' dung 
of dove ' (100 r 1). The assdnaka of E 21.16 beside tcwauka 
f ducks ' will be this same word. The asnd tcwauka ' doves, 
ducks ' occur together also in P 2025.48. 

Elsewhere in Iranian the dove is named from another 
word of colour : *kapauta ( grey, blue ' as in NPers. kabutar, 
Munjam kdwuya (Iran I 151), Sogd. Bud. kpwt'ych (SCE), 
NSogd. (Yaynabi) kaptica. 

9. bsel D., ul (u = ui), U I. ' upon ' < *upari. 

Khotan. mra, later also w, ( upon ' < *upari. Both As 
and Khotan. words are postpositions, in contrast to the 
prepositions MidPers. '6r, ZorPahl. apar, NPers. bar. 

10. bseynseg ID. * naked ' < *bagnaka-, bseyaemvad, 
b&yaevvad, D. bzeyaenbad, baey&nvad ' barefooted ', bseysemzasng, 


baeyaemsar, D. baByaenzaengae, basyaensar ' bare-legged, bare- 
headed ', ron-baeyd ' without belt ', Sogd. Bud. fiyn'k ( naked * 
(SCE 385) ; Chorasmian fiynyk (ZDMG 90. 1936 *34*) ; 
Khotan. bunaa- (sing, bynai, plur. bund, translating Sanskr. 
nagndh, P 3513, 71 v 3) < *bagna-ka-. Contrast Avestan 
mayna-, Zor. Pahl. br'hnk, NPers. barahnah. In -bseyd I would 
recognize -yd < -yn-. 

11. ca- ; ua- before adjectives ' as ; so '. In origin these 
words may be instrumentals with -a < -a, as to < *td ' but ' 
and ma < *md ' not '. We find cdcseg dzuris, udcaeg dae 
k'ona ' as rightly you speak, so may your hearth be right ' 
(Diet. s.v. udcaeg); uoi cacaegaei zaeyun, uocaegaei aei mas 
laequaenaen rodtetae ' as truly I speak it, so truly give it to my 
son ' (Pam. 2.7, with note 45) ; cacaeg si korasn, uacaeg nin 
aei ustur xucau xuarzdzinaedtaei rodtdzaenaei ' As truly I beg 
it of them, so truly will the great God give us it out of his 
goodness ' (Pam. 2. 137). Similarly uancon * so easy ', 
uanaebaerasg ' so unusual '. 

Sogd. Bud. w\ w" ( so J . Thus w' Sfinz . . . c'rikw ' aussi 
epais que j (P 2.1012); w" wyVwyt . . . AYKZY 'aussi 
distinctement que ' (P 10.2) ; w'p'r'y'z ' so excellent ' (Dhuta 
292). See Benveniste, Textes sogdiens p. 182 ; BSOS 9. 517. 
My attention was first called to Sogdian w 1 by I. Gershevitch. 

12. cse- ' downwards' (Diet, s.v.) preverb, beside which c- 
in cuazm, D. cuazun ' to dam up ', see above duazm. Hence 
caevaerin ' put ', caevdisin ' show ', caexsln ' wash ' beside the 
verbs aev&rin, aevdisln, aexsln. It occurs also after other 
preverbs ocamonin, bacamonm, aercarazm (where V. Miller, 
GIP Ossetisch 84, identified this -c- with the preverb --). 

Khotan. tea- : tcabalj- { scatter ', gujsabaj- ' destroy '. 
Maralbasi Iranian tea-: tsawarg- 'break'; Pasto ca- in 
camfom, camldstdl ' to lie down ' (Morg., EVP 17). Wax! 
has 6drm-: cdrdmd- 'to enter' (Morg., IIFL 2. 518: 
< *ati-ram- ?). The origin remains uncertain : both hacd 
and patis- have been conjectured. In NSogdian (Yaynabi) 
cu- in cukair-, cuker- ' to fear ' corresponds to pac- in Sogd. 
Bud. pckwyr- ' to fear ' (H. Junker, Yaghnobi-Studien I 126). 


This p6- is derived from *patis- in the Grammaire Sogdienne 
II 169. Has *patisa- become *ftsa- and thence passed to 
*6a- ? ParacI pac ' before ' is explained from *patisa- (Morg., 
IIFL 1. 278, where also Sogd. pac- < *pati$-). Equally As 
fitdzag,fUcag, T).fitdzag,fitcag ' first ' may represent *pat(i)sdka- 
with i- umlaut of the first syllable. For the conjectured 
syncope compare such a change in a preverb as occurs in 
Khotan. pra- (Konow, Khotansak. Gram. 66), Pasto pra- 

< *pard (as prot, fern, prata l fallen ' < *pard-pasta-, Morg. 
EVP 59). 

13. caergaes ID. * eagle '. 

Sogd. Bud. crks (Reichelt, Frag. Ill 28) with c, in contrast 
to ZorPahl. karkds (GrBund 97. 3, to which the Pazand 
kargas corresponds in the Indian Bundahisn), NPers. kargas 
with k- as in the Avestan kahrkdsa-. 

14. daesni, D. daesni ( skilled ' < *dastya-. Final 4, D. -i 

< *-ya is found also in sefsderml, D. sefs&rmi ' ashamed ', 
xoli, D. xuali ' food for beasts ' < *hvdr-ya-. There has been 
a secondary replacement of st by sn. Fluctuation between 
sibilant and nasal or dental is to be noted, in reverse sn > st 
according to Morgenstierne's explanation of csest ( eye ' 

< *cas(m)n- (NTS 12. 267). For the voiced group zd-zn 
see under q&znlg. Add -bdeyd (see under b&ynaeg) < *bayna-. 

Khotan. dasta- { skilled ' < *dastya-. Earlier it has been 
already proposed (Zoroastrian Problems 160) to connect this 
word with the dasta- of ZorPahl. dstwbr *dasta/3ar 'doctor ', 
NPers. dastur, MidParth. dast ' able ' (Andreas-Henning, 
Mitteliran. Manichaica iii 54) rather than directly with 
dasta- ' hand '. The later forms of * ''dasta- * hand ' which 
appears in dialects remote from Old Persian, as in Pasto 
Ids ' hand ', lasta ' handle ', induced Morgenstierne (EVP 39) 
to propose a dissimilation of z-s to d-s. Does it not seem 
likely that the existence of the participle *dasta- ' skilled ' 
of the verbal base danh- : dah-, Sanskr. dams-, affected the 
transmission of *zasta- c hand ' ? A similar case would appear 
to occur in Khotan. gyasta-, jasta- ' god, deva ' < *yazata- 
with st in place of zd associated with the participle gyasta-, 


jasta- ' cleansed ', whereas the Maralbasi Iranian had jezda- 
(Konow, Ein neuer Saka-Dialekt 49). 

15. falsembulai, falsenbulai (Pam. 2, no. 53) D., dlfambllai 
(Diet. s.v. tavin), dlfamblai I. (for Tualon, see below) ' around ', 
frequently as a postposition after a genitive. The alternation 
-I- co zero is found elsewhere as in tlbdu, tbau ' name of a 
mountain ', sefsmsertaei abl. plur. (Mat. 25. 40), cefsimaer 

1. * brother ', 2. ' of the same womb ' (Bouda, Caucasica 
11. 62) ; si ' horn ', D. siuae (< *sima??), sik'a, sk'a; zlnary, 
znary ' valuable ' (Bul&m&ry ' The Nightingale ', translated 
from Andersen's Fairy Tales by ^Embselti Cock'o, Vladikavkaz 
1912). The -ai is here of uncertain origin. The As diphthong 
ai is from various sources. We have *kdya- ' heaping up ' 
in the suffixed -gai : iugai, D. yeugai ' one by one ', 
radgai, D. radugai ' in rows ' (see V. Miller, GIP Ossetisch 85) ; 
but also adjectival 5-8 mingai casfi ' five to eight thousand 
strokes ' (Fidiuseg 11-12, 43) ; urzgai ' like finger-tip ' 
= 'diversified ' zsex urzgai u, ksem qgezdig ksem m&gur ' the 
earth is manifold, now rich now poor ' (Diet. s.v. zsex) ; 
plur. biraegasidtas ' many ', mingxidtse ' in thousands y (Diet. 
s.vv. and s.v. centr) ; azmas azgai ' yearly ' (Diet. s.v. aexxurst). 
In aik, D. aikas ' egg ', ai < *dvya-. The same may be conjec- 
tured in I. sembai ' companion ' < *hambdvya-. In the numerals 
used by herdsmen (see A. Freiman, Zabitle osetinskie cislitelnle, 
Volume to S. Oldenburg 562) sevdai ' 70 ', asstai ' 80 ', ai < -dti. 
Possibly xai s share ', plur. x&idteB, is < *xdvya to xaun 
1 to fall ' < *kaf-, see below xaun. In faldembulai therefore 
possibly -ai < *-dvya-, beside the suffix -au < *-dv( ). This 
-au is 1. adjectival uaezzau, uozzau ' heavy ', uaez ' weight ', 

2. adverbial (a) ' like ' (passim) yse innee k'uxau ' like his 
other hand ' (Mat. 12. 13), plur. (Comaq, no. 7) fid miytau 
' like thick mists ', (b) ' in (a language) ' avestagau ' in 
Avestan ', grek'agau ' in Greek ' (Fidiuseg 11-12, 65), evreagau 
berdzenagau &m& romagau l in Hebrew, Greek and Latin ' 
(John 19. 20). This au recalls also the Sogd. Man. krsn'w 
'beautiful' from krsn 'form' (Henning, BBB 127). 
Khotanese has -au in aysdau, aysdo ' child ', see under irsezun. 


Sogdian has also Bud. -w'k, Man. -'wyy, 1. abstract Bud. 
s'n'w'k t invasion * (P 11. 21), Man. S/3'nzq'wyy ' thickness ' 
(Henning, BBB 124), 2. adj. ptpt'yriw'k 'separated' (SCE 
277), pry'w'k -yr'ns ' bond of passion ' (Dhuta 45). Chorasmian 
has -wk abstract : hlVwk ' fitness for marriage ' (A. Freiman, 
Khorezmijskij Yazik, Zap. Inst. Vostok. 7 (1939)). It is, 
however, alternatively possible that a case-ending lies behind 
the -ai, such as, perhaps, the Av. -di.d (ahurdi.d Yasna 29. 5). 

In the Tualon dialectal translation of St. Chrysostomos' 
liturgy in Georgian ecclesiastical script which in my copy 
(1821, without name of author) faces the Georgian original 
text on the opposite page the following passage occurs. In 
Psalm 34 the Greek Trape/A/taAet ayyeAos KvpLov KVK\O) TOJV 
(f>o/3ov[jievajv avrov is rendered into Georgian by daibanak *ebs l 
Angelosi Uwplisa garemos mosista mista. Thence the Tualon 
has arbdnat' k'anfan xic'aud zad salp'alamblai umei t'arsgit'an. 
Greek TrapejujSaAei is rendered by a denominative verb from 
banak'- ' camp ' (as Armen. banak (ed. Venice 163) renders 
Trape/z/foA^ in the Kallisthenes' Romance of Alexander, ed. 
Kroll 125) and by Tualon bmat ( (Iron binat, D. bunuat), 
while KVK\O> is given by garemos ' around ' and hence Tualon 
alp'alamblai (in which I survives after p'). To express Trept 
alfamblai is common in the New Testament (Mat. 8. 18, 
Mark 3. 8 ; 4. 10, Luke 13. 8). It is adj. in Luke 4. 14. 

With this word falsembulai ' around, KVK\CO ' which has 
little appearance of being in origin Iranian it is possible in 
view of the clear connection of As with the languages of 
Sogdiana and Khotan to compare a Central Asian word in 
the documents in Kharosthi script from the Niya site. 2 Here 
we find in document no. 415 parabulade (-ode abl. sing.), 
and in no. 586 parampulammi (loc. sing.). From the contexts 
Professor F. W. Thomas showed that the source of this word 
was almost certainly Greek TTapeppoXr) ' enclosure, camp ' 

1 In transliteration of Georgian I use &' f p* c' <f for the ejectives (supra- 
glottals), but leave the aspirates (subglottals) unmarked k t p c 6. For 
Tualon I have indicated the aspirates &' ' p 1 , since p' stands for /. 

2 Kharosthl Inscriptions discovered by Sir Aurel Stein in Chinese Turkestan, 
ed. by Boyer, Rapson, Senart, and Noble (1929). 


(Acta Orientalia 14. 109-111). T. Burrow in his translation 
has not rendered the word (Translation of the Kharosthi 
Documents from Chinese Turkestan, 1940), but I agree with 
Professor Thomas that there can be little doubt of its origin 
in Greek Trape/z^oA??. This woid falsembulai then shows the 
As in direct contact with a loanword otherwise only preserved 
for us in the Taklamakan desert. Naturally the word may 
have existed also in other languages of the Sogdian region. 

16. fat ' arrow ' I., ' arrow, bullet ' D., fatdon ' quiver '. 
The words occur in the Nart tales, which however have also 
been modernized by the introduction of the gun (top) to 
replace the earlier bow. 

Sogd. Bud. ySS- (*pdd-). R. Gauthiot recognized in this 
word NSogd. (Yaynabi) pat (Gram. Sogd. I 141 ; H. Junker, 
Yaghnobi-Studien I 128 has po-t, po-s), and Henning referred 
(Sogdica 40 and Addenda) to the other dialect forms in the 
Pamirs. See also Morgenstierne (Notes on Shughni, NTS 1. 65) 
for Suyni^wS, Rosani >a#, Yazg. ped, and Zarubin (Iran 1 164) 
who has Munjani pux ' arrow ' with other dialect forms. 

17. faz, D. fazde ' back part, shank ' < *fdza- or *pdza-. 
Morgenstierne hesitatingly compared Wax! puz ' breast ', and 
from other Pamir dialects Sarikoli puz, poz, with Khowar 
loanword pdz, Yidya^z (IIFL 2. 536). With this/az probably 
belongs iuvazlg, D. yeuvazug ' separate, to one side, simple '. 

Khotan. phajsd- occurs in one passage (E 23. 145) in the 
description of a horse. It is mentioned after ' head ' and 
1 back ' : phajsai Mde uysndta balysga ' his phajsd- is much 
raised, high '. The Khotan. js is ambiguous. In mijsd 
' marrow ' it is < zgy : *mazgya-, but in dljsala- ' silver ' 
z: < *arzata-. Hence phajsd- < *pazgy- or *paz- (or with/-). 
If there is a connection between faz and phajsd- the 
difference in vowel length a d could be compared with 
As sser ' head ' beside -sar in D. baeyaensar ' bareheaded ', 
NPers. sar ' head ' and nigunsdr ' with bent head ' ; or rod, 
D. radse 'row, series' beside MidPers. rdg (BSOS 9. 87), 
NPers. radah. 

18. faedg, faeik, D. f&dgae, faetkse ' law, custom, injunction, 


tribute '. The verbal forms faetfi, faetc'i, imperfect faedfi'di, 
fut. f set jen, D.faedgui ' it is fitting ' and the adjective faadfiog, 
D.faedguag, fdedgag ' befitting' may be explained as originally 
the sb. faedg with the substantive verb un in close contact. 
For the verbal form cf. f&ui, D. fseui. To the secondary 
verbal form faetji- and faedgu- the suffix -ag was then added. 
The same explanation is needed for D. fasndun ; pret. 
fasndodtsei * it pleased ', compounded offsendaa and un. 

Sogd. Bud. p$kh, oblique pSkyh translating Sanskr. dharma 
' law ', but used also for dharma * element (philosophical) ' ; 
Man. pSk' ' law, duty, rite ' ; Chr. pdg' ' law-suit ' Mat. 5. 40 
(Henning, BBB 31, Lentz-Miiller, Sogd. Texte II 103) ; 
possibly Ormmipadak postposition ' like ' (Morg. IIFL 1. 403). 
The proposal in A. von Gabain and Rachmati, Turkische 
Turfan-Texte 6. 72, and A. von Gabain, Altturkische Grammatik 
304 to trace in this Sogdian word the source of Turkish 
bitkaci ' scribe ', ultimately also Manchu bitxe ' book ', and 
to derive both from Syriac ptq', ptq' ' tabula ', which renders 
Greek TTITT&KIOV ' writing- tablet ' is acceptable. A similar 
fate befell another Greek word vo/xos- which through Sogdian 
nom ' religious book ' was widely extended in Central Asia 
into Uigur Turkish and Mongol, and beyond into Samoyede, 
see Kai Donner, Uber Soghdisch nom " Gesetz " und Samojedisch 
nom " Himmel, Gott ", in Studia Orientalia dedicated to Knut 
Tallqvist, 1925. 

19. fsein ID. ' each, separately ; different ', fmn&rdasH^ 
D. fdeinerdsemse ' to all sides ' ; fgeinse far sir dig dei ' on either 
side ' (John 19. Ityjseinseyuni ' for each fleece ' (Pam. 2. 147), 
fseinse kustemi ' on different work ' (Pam. 2. 114) with the 
numerative ending, fsemae sirei (siremi) ' each on a seat ' 
(Pam. 2. 114). In Pam. 2. 15 occurs fasinaen. The word may 
be derived < *patina-, as we find /a?- < *pati-. The develop- 
ment has been *pati > *pai > /j-, whence before a following 
consonant two treatments are found : 1. i preserved as in 
f&inae ID., cf. the treatment of i resulting from umlaut in 
ttuinln I. (with i t not 1) ' be called ' < *hvan-ya-, or 2. assimi- 
ated to the following consonant, cf. similarly xunnun D. ' be 


called ', zinnun D. ' appear ', zlnnm (V. Miller, GIF 
Ossetisch 65), zinln (Diet.) I. < *zan-ya- ; k'dnnseg (whence 
k'anasg) I. ' small ' < *kanya-ka, see below ; annas, innae 
' other ' (with i) < *anya-. The second case arises with the 
preverb *pati- > *pai-. In Digor/as- is followed by a doubled 
consonant (as stated by the Diet, s.v./a?-) : fasccaeun ' to go '. 
The Dictionary does not recognize this doubling in Iron : 
fsecseun, but it is given by V. Miller (GIF Ossetisch 83) : 
fdeccldl ( he went '. This same assimilation explains fsezzseg 
ID. ' autumn ' < *paizag- < *patizaka- compared with 
Sogd. Man. ptyz ' autumn ' (Lentz-Waldschmidt, Dogmatik 70, 
Henning, BBB 133) ; in ZorPahl. p'tyc *patiz, NPers. paiz 
the result has been a lengthened vowel. The Iron zsex ' earth ', 
ablat. Z3BXX3BI, adjectival zaexxon (D. zaenxae with secondary n) 
should be traced to *zaix < *zdi-xa- and compared with 
Sogd. Bud. z'yh ; Man. z'y *zdy ' earth '. 

Sogd. Bud. pt'yn 'separately', pt'yn pt'yn (SCE 67), 
ptpt'yn ' separately ' (P 10. 27), adj. ptpt'yriw'k ' separated y 
(SCE 277), ptpt'yricwy (Dhuta 34), see Benveniste, JRAS 
1933. 57 ; Sogd. Man. ptyyn (Henning, BBB 58). 

Khotan. pana- ' each ' inflected (sing. E ; once plural 
P 2739. 41 panvg, ksg, badvg, ' at all six times '). As a preverb 
*pati- becomes pa- in Khotanese, often followed by palataliza- 
tion, hence pa- < *pai < *pati. 

Avestan paitina- ' separate ', adjectival from pati-. For 
the distributive use cf. Sanskr. pratidinam ' every day '. 

20. fsersfet ID. ' axe ', translates au/7? Mat. 3. 10. 

Khotan. pada- ' axe ' (= Tib. sta-re) in the Sanghata : 
sutra 82a 1, 5 may represent *parta- or *parata- (cf. gyasta- 
< *yazata-). 

Agnean porat, Kuchean peret * axe '. E. Liden (Studien 
zur tocharischen Sprachgeschichte (1916) 16-17) derived faerast 
and the Agnean and Kuchean words from Old Persian 
*para9u-, corresponding to Sanskr. parasu- (OPers. 6 
= Sanskr. s), but possibly in view of Morgenstierne's dis- 
cussion of Indo-European Jc (see Indo-European R in Kafiri, 


NTS 13. 225 if.) a more direct connection with *parat'u- 
would be possible. 

21. fsezd&g I. ' smoke '. 

Sogd. Bud. pzt- ' smoke ', see Benveniste on P 3. 178, 
where NSogd. (Yaynabi) pazd and As fsezdseg are quoted. 

Av. pazdaya- ' to drive away ' ; MidParth. n'ypzd ' flute- 
player ' (Henning, BBB 112). 

22. qseu, D. yseu ' village ' < *gava- ; adj. qseuuon, yseuuon. 
ZorPahl. gwpt, gwkpt *gopat, used as title of a chief in Sogdiana 
(see BSOS 6. 951), seems to represent *gava-pati- ' lord of 
the gava(s) '. That is the Avestan gava- in Videvdat 1. 4 
gaum yim suybo.sayandm ' the gava inhabited by the Sugda 
(Sogdians) '. A word gava- occurs also in the two Avestan 
compounds gava-sayana- and gava-siti- and if we explain 
these words to mean ' dwelling in villages ' with gava- 
corresponding to As yseu, a good interpretation is won. 
This gava- in turn may mean originally ' cattle-station ' 
whence the ' village ' is derived. V. Miller, IF 21, no 31, 
similarly. C. Bartholomae had assumed gav- ' cow ' as the 
first part of the Avestan compounds (Altiran. Worterbuch 

23. qseun, qud, D. y&un ' to be needed ' < *gav- ; qaun, 
D. yaun ' to decrease ' trans. < *gdv-. 

Sogd. Bud. yw- (P passim) ' to need, be necessary ', yw'n ' sin ' ; 
Man. yw-, yw'n ' sin ' (Henning, BBB 126). Chorasmian 
yw'c *yawdts 3 sing. conj. (A. Freiman, Khorezmijskij Yazik, 
Zap. Inst. Vost. 7) Kaj Barr has pointed to a probable survival 
of this base *gav- in the Central Persian dialects, as Gazi gu ' it 
is necessary ', pret. gd (Iranische Dialektaufzeichnungen 497). 

24. qaez, D. qsezse ' reed ' (Pam. 2. 133) < *gaasa-. The q- 
in both dialects is unusual for Old Iran. g-. It can be quoted 
in qain, D. qayun = NPers. gddan. It appears more naturally 
after s in D. uesqsedse ' maple ' beside uesy&dde, 1. uisqaed. 
In qamil, D. qamil ' reed ' the same q q occurs. 

Khotan. gaysa- ' reed ' translates Sanskr. nada (Siddhasara 
14 v 4), but NPers. gaz i tamarisk, measuring yard, a kind 
of arrow '. Pasto yoza ' firewood ' (Morg. IIFL 2. 424). 


25. qeeznig, qaezdig, D. ysezdug ' ricli '. Both zn and zd 
are given in sing, and plur. (Diet. s.v.). Kubaltl Aleksandr, 
Mfxaerdti X&sanse (ed. Baiev-Lentz, Ein Heldenepos des 
ossetischen Dichters Alexander Kubalov 1934) has qsezmgdzinad 
(1. 8) ' riches ' beside qsezdig (1. 10) ' rich '. Digor bsezdse 
1 thickness ' beside I. bxzn and D. bseznag ' thick ' has probably 
zd < zn, rather than -das < *td- (see below -tde). For qaeznig 
an obvious etymology is from *gazna- ' treasure ' < older 
*ganza-, with the -ug suffix as in D. dedonug ' thirsty ', D. 
uindtug ' visible '. 

Sogd. yzn *yazn (see Benveniste, JA 1935. 1. 141 ; 1936. 
1. 227) ; Man. yznyy. Add Uigur Turkish qiznaq ' treasury ' 
< *yaznak (F. W. K. Miiller, Uigurica II 76 1. 2). B. Laufer 
(Sino-Iranica 359) quoted a botanical text of about A.D. 860 
with the place-name in Afghanistan {Jp ffl Wb (medieval $[$ ) 
k'ie-s9-na< *g'ia-zia-na (Karlgren, Analytic Dictionary of Sino- 
Japanese 342, 647) and in the Tang History (Chavannes, 
Documents sur les Tou-kiue occidentaux 160) f| ^g ^j$ Karlgren 
74, 782, 647 xo-si-na < *ydk-siet-na. 

The Niya Kharosthi documents have gamni (mn <nn < nj) 
and kani ' treasure ' beside gamnavara ' treasurer ' (T. Burrow, 
BSOS 7. 510). 

With this explanation from *gazna-, it becomes easier to 
accept a connection between As qsezdig and Hungarian (old) 
kazdag, (new) gazdag ' rich ' (H. Skold, Die ossetischen 
Lehnworter im Ungarischen 22, G. Schmidt, Zur frage der 
ossetisch-ungarischen lehnworter 93). 

26. i D. proclitic ' the '. In Iron the former presence of 
a proclitic *i is attested by the shift of the accent to the 
initial syllable of the following word, see the Dictionary II, 
preface p. Ill, and V. I. Abaiev, Ob udarenii v osetinskom 
yazlke, Dokladi Akad. Nauk 1924. 

The use of Digor i can be illustrated from frequent 

(1) Before noun, indifferent to case and number : 

Nom. i baex ' the horse ' (Dig. Skaz. 4), i nartse ' the Narts ' 
(Pam. 2. 52) ; ace. i fiyyaui ' the shepherd ' (Pam. 2. 10) ; 


Dat. i doraen ' the stone ' (Pam. 2. 10), i xestaeraen ' to the 
eldest ' (Pam. 2. 14) ; abl. i k'aedzasxasi ' from the cliff ' 
(Pam. 2. 11), i fonssei ' from the cattle ' (Dig. Skaz. 20, 
quoted GIP Ossetisch 43) ; loc. i xaedzari ' in the house ' 
(Dig. Skaz. 49), i buduri ' in the field ' (Pam. 2. 137, no. 58) ; 
Superess. i xedbasl ' on the bridge ' (Pam. 2. 83) ; Allat. 
i mxsugmse ' to the tower ' (Pam. 2. 83, 84), i baslasaemas 
1 to the tree ' (Pam. 2. 6), i uossemse ' to the woman ' (Pam. 
2. 8), i mardmae ' to the dead ' (Pam. 2. 9). Plural : i bandtde 
' the days ' (Pam. 2. 10), i xaeznatae ' the treasures ' (Pam. 
2. 53), i kizgudtsemse ' to the maidens ' (Pam. 2. 84), * asfsaedtse 
' the armies ' (Pam. 2. 83), ifaedtasbael * on the footsteps ' (Pam. 
2. 11), i kizgudtsei ' from the maidens ' (Pam. 2. 147), i 
kaestaertasn ' to the younger ones ' (Pam. 2. 151). 

(2) Before adjective with noun : 

i kasstasr ^Exsaras ' the elder ^Exsarse ' (Pam. 2. 5), i tar 
aexsaevi ' the dark night ' (Pam. 2. 83) ; i uors aexsir ' the white 
milk ' (Pam. 2. 156) ; i boras naslfus ' the yellow ram ' 
(Pam. 2. 155). 

(3) Before adjective alone : 

i xestaer ' the elder ' (Pam. 2. 14), i kaestasr ' the younger ' 
(Pam. 2. 84). 

4. Between adjective and noun : 

xuarz i uasgergi ' the good St. George ' (Pam. 2. 139, no. 65), 
ustur i nartmse ' to the great Narts ' (Pam. 2. 5). 

5. Before numeral : 

i duude mugkagi * the two families ' (Pam. 2. 5), i duuse 
luxi ' the two pieces ' (Pam. 2. 9), i duuse uosasi ' from the 
two women ' (Pam. 2. 9), i avdei ' of the seven ' (Pam. 2. 13), 
i avd xrvademsen ' to the seven brothers ' (Pam. 2. 83). 

(6) With intervening genitive : 

i togi asrtasx ' the drop of blood ' (Pam. 2. 6), i kizgi dzigkot&i 
1 from the girl's locks ' (Pam. 2. 9), i kizgi dzurdtse ' the girl's 
words ' (Pam. 2. 84), i yseui saeri ' above the village ' (Pam. 
2. 83), i uobayi xulfi ' in the interior of the tomb ' (Pam. 2. 9), 
i l&gaeti duar ' the gate of the hut ', superess. i Isegseti duarbael 
(Pam. 2. 13, 14). 


(7) With anticipatory dative : 

i fiyau&n & fustse ' the shepherd's cattle ' (V. Miller, Osset. 
Etiudl 92), i xsen&n ba x kizgae ' but the Khan's girl ' (Pam. 
2. 6). 

(8) With ' and ' : 

i l&g sema i uosse dzoruncae ' the man and the woman say ' 
(Pam. 2. 57), i ddlis sema i bairag ma sertigkag anz isxasta 
' he reared the lamb and the foal the third year ' (Pam. 2. 98), 
i madds ma i fidae * the mother and the father ' (Pam. 2. 93). 

The resemblance of Digor i ' the ' to the Sogdian yw ' the ' 
is strikingly shown by the following occurrences (taken from 
Benveniste's note JA 1936. 1. 216 ff. and Textes Sogdiens 201). 

(1) Before noun : 

yw wrtn ' the car ' (Vim. 64) ; plural yw pwt'yst ' the 
Buddhas ' (Vim. 104), yw w'ti'r smYnt ' the beings think ' 
(P 2. 56). 

(2) Before adjective and noun : 

yw wytwytk rw$ ' the molten brass ' (Reichelt, Frag. II 15), 
yw mrtym'k CWRH ' the human body ' (P 6. 69) ; plural yw 
r'$6t mrtym'tt ' the men on the road ' (SCE 527). 

(3) Before noun and pronominal adjective : 

yw yr'm'k wyspw ' the whole riches ' (Reichelt, Frag. II a 21). 

(4) Before adjective alone : 

yw ny'zkynt ' the poor ' Vim. 160 ; yw yw'r'nt ' the right 
one ' (O 1 5). 

(5) With intervening genitive and phrase : 

yw Srm'yk Sj3ry' tys ' the entrance to the dharma-gate ' 
(Vim. 205), yw pwty ptfir'w s'w'r ' the samadhi of the 
Buddha's remembrance ' (Dhyana 375), yw fiyn fiytm pwty 
* the Buddha most godlike of gods ' (P 2. 1119). 

(6) With ' and ' : 

yw "zwh ZY yp'k ' desire and anger ' (P 5. 108), yw CWRH 
ZY tnp'r ' the body and body ' (P 6. 92). 

(7) With preceding demonstrative yyS yw pwt'yst ' these 
Buddhas ' (Dhyana 347). 

To this y- in Sogdian other derivatives have been traced 
as ywn'k, y'n'kh, y'ntt, which are not considered here. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. C 


Chorasmian has <^l 'y (masc.) and u y' (fern.) ' the '. The 
pronunciation is not certain since either i or 1 and ya or yd 
seem possible, but in monosyllables an old long final vowel 
-a may have survived. The forms are quoted by A. Freiman 
(Khorezmijskij Yazik 315). For the comparison of Chorasmian 
'y without -w with Sogd. Bud. yw, cf. also Chorasmian jl j| jl 
az dz ydz ' I ' beside Sogd. Bud. 'zw (Henning, ZDMG 90 
(1936) *32*, Freiman, Khorezmijskij Yazlk 315). Chorasmian 
y' appears to be derived from an Old Iranian *yd. 

The similarity in the use of As i, Sogd. Bud. yw, Chorasmian 
'?/, y' to that of ya- in the Avesta is at once piquant. The 
following examples and others are given in Keichelt, 
Awestisches Elementarbuch 370-1. 

Yast 8. 21 d dim bavaiti aiwi.vanyd daevo yd apao$o tistrim 
raevantdm x v ar9naimhantdm ' the demon Apaosa overcomes 
the wealthy fortunate Tistrya '. 

Yasna 8. 28 d dim bavaiti aiwi.vanyd tistryo raeva x "awnanulid 
daeum yim apaosdm ' Tistrya, the wealthy the fortunate, 
overcomes the demon Apaosa '. 

Yasna 30. 5 (Ga0a) aya mainivd varatd yd dwgvd acistd 
Vdrdzyo ( of those two spirits the holder of deceit chose doing 
the worst '. 

Yasna 45. 2 (Ga0a) yayd spanyd uiti mravat ywn angrdm 
* of whom the more beneficent so spoke to the destructive 
one '. 

Yast 5. 25 tarn yazata yd yimo xsaeto hvadwo ' him worshipped 
the glorious Yama, the herdsman '. 

Yasna 9. 8 drujim fraca k9Tdntat amo mainyus aoi yam 
astvaifim gaedam ' the destructive spirit fashioned out the 
Druz against the embodied world '. 

Yasna 46.3 (Ga#a) kadd mazdd yoi uxsdno asnam 

anhdus darddrdifro asahyd frdrmte 

'when, Mazdah, shall the children (?) x of the days (?) 
advance for the maintenance of the world of Eight ? ' 

1 If uxsan- means ' growing one ' ; it might also mean ' shining one '. 
Is asnam equivalent to *asnanqm * of the nobles ' ? 


Videvdat 15. 9 md no aesa yd kaine masydnam parofsarzmdt 
tar 5 daxstom par ay at tar 6 apdmca urvaramca ' Let not the 
girl before men for shame remove the daxsta, remove the 
water and plant '. It is clear that in both Gathic and later 
Avestan the relative use of ya- has yielded to its use as definite 
article, with which in aesa yd kaine ' this girl ' a demonstrative 
is combined as we find regularly in Greek euros- 6 avijp ' this 
man '. The Sogdian usage in yi/S yw pwt'yst (Dhyana 347) 
' these Buddhas ' is the same. 

From this articular use the relative construction of MidPers. 
1 9 1y, ZorPahl. i, NPers. i is quite distinct. The relative use 
of this 1 is an old use of ya- conserved, whereas the use of ya- 
as definite article is an innovation. The difference of develop- 
ment accentuates still more the remarkable concordance of 
As, Sogdian, Chorasmian, and Avestan. Details of the relative 
use of i are given by P. Tedesco (Dialektologie der Westiran- 
ischen Turfantexte, Monde oriental 15). The particular NPers. 
i ki construction would require a lengthy discussion in connec- 
tion with the developed use of ki in NPers. and its antecedents 
in ZorPahlavi. It may be said here that the 1 of 1 ki was 
probably originally the relative ya- to which ki has been 
superimposed, as we find cun beside cunki, ZorPahl. cegon 
beside cegon '&a8 C^AJ jwj@( Videvdat 21. 4), cegon 'kaS-as, 

cegon l ke (Vid. 8. 86). 

Clearly the evidence for the origin of As i < *ya-, 
Chorasmian i < *yah, if < *yd, and Sogd. Bud. yw < *yam 
is of importance. The use in each language is alone sufficient 
to incline the balance to this side. Add that in Sogd. Bud. 
yw has no alternative form with initial alif, unlike 'mw- 
beside mw- < *ima-, and this too would incline one to doubt 
any connection with Old Iranian *iyam (as was proposed by 
Benveniste, JA 1936. 1. 218) or with *ayam. It may be added 
that V. Miller tried to find the ay- of *ayam in Digor yey&, ye 
* that one ', but saw ya- in the As pronouns Dat. in and the 
rest (GIP Ossetisch 52). To be compared with Digor i < ya- 
with loss of the vowel is &z ' I ' < *azam, in contrast with 
Sogd. Bud. 'zw with -w < -am. 


The possibility that ya- ' the ' may exist unnoticed in 
Khotanese is suggested by the word i P 2783. 30-31 (BSOS 
10. 374) u hamdarye i khari tsvd ' and she went to the (?) other 
ass '. I had in a note on the passage tried to find a word i 
1 one ', for which the regular word is ssau. But in this I 
possibly the article should be seen or failing that the enclitic 
pronoun -1. Previously -i has always been found attached 
to the preceding word coalescing with a vowel or with -y- 
-t- or -v- between (see BSOS 10. 572). The problem, however, 
cannot be treated here. 

A reference should come here to the use of As a. As a 
pronoun this word is given by V. Miller (GIP Ossetisch 53) : 
a ' this ', but for the use before a noun he prescribes the form 
with -ci, I. acl. The dictionary has del, D. aci ' this ' beside 
ucl, D. yeci ' that '. In Pam. 2. 94 is found uoci mary ' tu pticu, 
that bird '. In pronominal use occurs a ba uaexaen uodzaenaei 
* it will be such ' (Pam. 2. 150, 151), but we have also a yseui 
(Pam. 2. 88) translated ' v etom sele, in this village ', a zaenxaeb&l 
' no, zemle, on the earth ' (Pam. 2. 118), and a duuae xestaeri 
daer kurd aencae, fed a kaest&r ba daeuaen l&vard adt&i ' the two 
elder are affianced, but the younger was given to you ' 
(Pam. 2. 93). The translation has obe starsie ' both the elder '. 
In the preceding paragraph i kaestaer was used. In a compound 
we have dbon, D. oboni ' to-day ', with adjectival derivative 
dbonigkon, D. abonigkon ' of to-day '. Hence two uses are 
attested : pronominal adjective and definite article. In 
connection with D. yeci it should be noted that it is rendered 
in yeci ses by ' eto pero, this feather ', yeci sabiy ' of this boy ', 
but yeci anz ' v tot god, that year ' (Pam. 2. 94, 95, 146). 
The Dictionary has c tot, that '. 

27. ir&ezun D., rsszm L, beside -irsezln in compounds, as 
diraezm, * to grow ' ; iraez D., rssz I. ' growth ', rsszsen I. 
4 growing organism, child ' (Diet. s.v. xizin) : iraez- < *vi-raz-. 

Khotan. alysdnaa- ' youth ' renders Sanskr. kumdrabhuta 
' youth ', the epithet of Manjusri. So Kha 1. 13, 144 v 4 
mamnusri alysdnei, G 3 b 4 (instr.) mamjusnna alysdnaina 
( the youth Manjusri '. That in Central Asia this was the 


Buddhist interpretation of kumdrabhuta we know from the 
Chinese translation 5 ? t'ung-tsi ' boy ' and the Tibetan 
gzon-nu ' youth ', whence also came the Mongol jalayu ' youth J . 
Subsequently the word alysdnaa- ' youth ' translating Asmara- 
was given the secondary meaning of kumdra namely ' prince '. 
(The Spanish use of Infante ' infant, prince ' from Latin infans 
puer ' boy not yet able to speak ' is similar.) There is, however, 
other evidence for the meaning of alysdnaa-. In P 2834 the 
story is told of the merchant Nanda. His wife bore a child 
to him : (1. 32) daha tvaraddna dyena sakalaka para ysd 
1 she bore a male, a son exceedingly good to look upon ', 
then (11. 33-4) occurs the statement tta ra khu si eysynai 
vdsta husd mistd hamye ' then when this boy (alysdnaa-) 
had grown and was adult '. In form alysdnaa- is an adjectival 
derivative in -ka from the middle participle -ana (on which 
see Konow, Saka Studies 58 and Khotansak. Gram. 60), 
hence *arzdna-ka-. The base arz- ' grow ' is to be compared 
with the raz- of As irsez-, and the relationship may be explained 
as that which separates Avestan drdzata-, OPers. ardata-, 
Khotan. dljsata- ' silver ' from Sanskr. rajata-. Earlier 
(BSOS 9. 75) Khotan. aysdau, aysdo ' child ' (rendering 
Sanskr. bdla in Siddhasara 6v5, 7r3, 7rl) was quoted, 
where also a derivative of arz- ' grow ' is probably preserved 
(on the -au, cf. above under, faldembulai). For the presence 
of vi- 9 cf. qal (-iqal with preverb : aiqal), D. iyal 1. ' awake ', 
2. ' awaking ' with Sogd. Bud. yr- ' to watch over ' (P 11. 
17, 26). NSogd. (Yaynabi) yar- : yort ' to look at '. 

NPers. raz ' vineyard ' has a different, specific, meaning 
(on which see P. Tedesco, JAOS 63 (1943) 151 ff.). 

28. iiiarun D., udrln I. ' divide, share ' < *vi-vdr-. 
Khotan. gvar- (gvir-, gver-) : guda ' impart, tell ' < *vi-var- ; 

gvdra ' matter of business ' (BSOS 8. 123, Konow, NTS 11. 49). 
Add Ch 00266. 206 rasta ma pyatsa gver a ' tell it correctly 
before me '. 

29. k'annseg, Vanaeg I. ' small ', comparative k'ddtaer, 

(Diet. s.v. xiary), < *kanya-ka-. For -ann-, -an- 


< *-any-, see above faeinze, and for k' ejective see above 
selxlnc' . 

Khotan. kanaiska l little finger ' (' the little one '), see 
JRAS 1942. 250. Munjani kdndir, kanddr ' smallest, youngest ', 
kand,9rd, kdndir dguskikd ' little finger '. 

More specialized in meaning are Av. kainyd-, kairii-, 
kainin- ' girl ' ; Sogd. Man. qnck ' boy ', qncyy, kncy, kncyk 
'girl' (Henning, BBB 101); ZorPahl. kariik, kariicak, 
MidPers. knyg, qnycg, MidParth. qnyyg ' girl ' (Andreas- 
Henning, Mitteliran. Manichaica II 58, III 57) ; NPers. 
kamzah ' girl '. So also in Pasto ndzdl ' girl ' according to 
Morgenstierne's elaborate interpretation (NTS 12. 98). To 
this group belongs As clndz, D. kindzse ' daughter-in-law ', 
if -anc- > indz, see on selxlnc 1 above. 

30. kaef, plur. kseftse ID., 'fish ', used of fish in the sea: 
Mark 1. 16 kaef-axsfitse 'fishers', John 21. 10 d kseftse aercaxslat 
' what fish you have caught ', beside k&sag in John 21. 3 
ksesag axslnmae ' to catch fish '. 

Sogd. Bud. kp-, plur. kp'yst ; Man. Chr. qp- ; Pasto 
kab, Waziri kab l fish ', kaba ' eel' (< *kapiya-, Morg. EVP 31, 
NTS 12. 93) ; Munjani kap (Morg. IIFL 2. 218 with other 
dialect forms), Waxi kup (Morg. EVP 31). 

Khotan. kava- ' fish ', adj. kavmaa-. 

J. Charpentier put together what he had been able to find 
on kaefm Monde Oriental 18 (1924), and K. Bouda (Caucasica 
11. 60) has, after Schiefner, compared kdef with Hiirkan 
yavs and Lak tyaba, with which, however, it would require 
a long dissertation to prove a connection, if any exists. 

31. ksent ' building ', quoted in the Dictionary from the 
earlier (1864) translation of the gospels from Mark 13. 1 ; 
Morgenstierne, who has also recognized the word (NTS 12, 267), 
could thence quote the plural k&ntitae (not available to me), 

< *kan6d-. 

Sogd. Bud. knSh, Chr. knt, kt ; Pasto kandai (Morg. EVP 32, 
NTS 12. 267) ; Khotan. kanthd-. NPers. kand ' village ' 
will be a loan-word to be classed with other Sogdian woi 


in Persian (see Henning, BSOS 10. 93 if.). J. Charpentier 
(Monde Oriental 18. 1 if.) treated of Sanskr. kanthd. 

32. ksesag, D. k&salgse ' fish ' ; John 21. 3 k&sag axslnmae 
' to catch fish '. 

Pasto Wanetsi kdz6 (fern.), plur. kdz'e ' fish ' (Morg. NTS 
4, 168) with z < Indo-Eur. *Jcs. If the Georgian kasaq-i 
1 herring ' is related, the borrowing must be from Iranian. 
The -Ig- of the Digor word is isolated : it would be possible 
to compare the intrusive -n- of such a word as aexsin&ngse 
as given above. 

33. kunseg, D. kun&g ' small ' < *kavna-. 

Sogd. Bud. kfin- ; Man. qftn-, kpn- ; Chr. qbnq ' little ' ; 
Pasto konkai ' smaU ' kon- < *kabna- (Morg. EVP 33, NTS 
12. 267). The /3 > v contrasts with Av. kamna-, kambista-, 
MidPers. qmb, MidParth. qmbyft, ZorPahl. NPers. kam, which 
is found also in Sogd. Bud. knpy ' deficiency ', Man. kmbyy 
' of little value ', kmbwnyy ' diminution '. 

34. Isezyfifer L, Ise-yzaer ID. ' path ' < *fm-zgara- or *fra- 
yzara- ; zyselin, D. dezyselun, seyzddun ' fall, flow down ', 
trans, zyalm, D. dezyalun, deyzalun ' make to fall '. 

Sogd. zyrt, 'zyrt ; Man. Chr. zyrt ' quick ', Pasto zyard 
(with zgdstdl ' to run '). Khotanese uses haspara- * path ' 
< *fra-spara-. 

35. rivset, D. rseftbadt ' rest, siesta ', rivast dfon ' time for 
daily rest ' ; rasftdd ID. ' noonday meal, noonday ', D. rdeftae 
1 noon ', I. riv&tdon, riv&ddon (K'osta, Iron Faendir, Qubadi 10) 
' place of siesta ' < *mpi6vd-, see Baiev-Lentz's edition of 
Kubalti Aleksandr, dEfxaerdtl Xsesanse 197 ; Morgenstierne, 
NTS 12. 268 ; V. Miller, IF 21, no. 54. A fuller form with 
a- is found in fses-arseftde D, fdes-drseftl I ' afternoon '. 

Sogd. rypSfih l midday ' Dhuta 209 (see also Henning, 
BBB 63) ; MidPers. rbyh (Andreas-Henning, Mitteliran. 
Manichaica I p. 17 R II 31 ; Ein manichdisches Henochbuch 33 
note 4). Khotan. ravye pa, rravye pa l south ', Avestan 
rapiOwd-, ardm.piOwd-. 

36. ron, D. route ' belt, girdle ', plur. radix, < *rdna-. 


Sogd. Bud. rVM (VJ 41', p. 44) rendered 'bijoux' is 
' girdle ' as Ilya Gersevic has shown me. 
Av. rdna-, ZorPahL, NPers. ran ' thigh '. 

37. son ID. * enemy ' < *sdna-. 

Sogd. Bud. Man. Chr. s'n (see Henning, BBB 69) ; Khotan. 
sdna-, adj. sdninaa- (Jataka-stava 32 v 2, quoted BSOS 
10. 903) ; Kuchean sdm, plur. sani (E. Sieg, Die Kutschischen 
Karmavibhanga-Texte der Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris, 
Zeits. f. Vgl. Sprachf. 65, on folio 1 b 2 ; Konow, NTS 13. 210). 
The phrase rin sonaei daer aendaer (Diet. s.v. son) ' illness, other 
(trouble) from the hostile world ' recurs in Buldemaery p. 10 
in zaraegmae poddzaxi caestltil rinasi-sonasi cl uodi, udon tari 
kasnln baidldtoi to which corresponds ' as it sang, the spectres 
grew paler and paler '. 

38. stad ID. ' weary ' < *stdta-, stain, D. stayun ' to 
weary '. 

Khotan. std ' weary ' < *stdta- (BSOS 10, 598). 

39. sug ' horn ', known to me only in D. saedsugon ' hundred- 
horned ' in the verses daelae i komi dumasgi saedsugon sag 
xezui ' below in the entrance to the ravine the hundred- 
horned stag is grazing ' (Pam. 2. 135, no. 52). Hence sug 
contains su- < *sru ' horn ', beside si, D. siuae (< *suuae ?), 
slk'a, sk'a with suflix -k'a (see below under xunk'). 

Khotan. su * horn ', svinaa- adj. ' of horn ' ; Waxi S9U, 
sau ; Yidya su (Morg. IIFL 2. 414, 543), Av. sru-. 

40. sunt D., sint I. * raven ', plur. smtitse. 

Khotan. ssunda- E, later sdmda-, diminutive sdmdala- (see 
BSOS 10. 585) ; Waxi smd' raven ' (Morg. IIFL 2. 543). 

41. tayd ID. adj., adv. * quick ', sb. ' quickness ', uaitayd 
1 at once ', related to tasxin, taext, D. taexun ' fly ', aert&xm 
' fly, run to '. 

Khotan. thatau, later ihyau ' quickly J < *0ataka- 
< *taxtaka- (which I wrongly opposed earlier, BSOS 9. 76). 

42. -tae ID. plural suffix, inflected with endings of the 
singular. After numerals -tee is doubtful. Such a case of -tae 
after a numeral appears to be found in Digor uasiguti xucau 
ku sfaldista uaedta si asrtas asnsuvaertas odtaencae (V. Miller, 


Osset. Etiudl I 92) * when God created the Useyug (giants), 
then there were of them three brothers ', to be contrasted 
with dertae aefslmaerl udlstl ' there were three brothers ' 
(ibid. 58). But R. von Stackelberg (Beitrdge zur Syntax des 
Ossetischen 65) questioned this use. The -tae plural, however, 
occurs after birae as in birae aendaertde ' many others ' (Luke 8. 3), 
birae kaeftl uozaei ' with the weight of many fishes ' (John 21. 6). 
Earlier attempts to explain -tae are listed by V. Miller (GIP 
Ossetisch 41). (Is it necessary now to warn against confusion 
with the Georgian oblique plural -to ?) It should be noted 
that the -t- is treated as if initial, remaining therefore -t- 
between vowels and after nasals, whereas Old Iranian inter- 
vocalic -t- passed to -d-. The -tae can then be identified with 
Old Iran, -td in semi-independence in a compound, which 
has resulted in the change of *-td > *-to > *-tas, while as 
an independent monosyllable *td became to as *md became 
ma with -a, and in the final syllable of a word -d became 
Digor -ae, and was lost in Iron : madae, mad ' mother '. If 
the gen. -tl, D. -ti continues an old form < *-taydh, then 
a derivation of -tae from the Old Iran. *-tds nom. sing, of the 
-tat- abstract is excluded. It will be seen below that Sogdian 
also requires *-td. The -das of D. baezdae ' thickness ' could, 
if it stood alone, be derived from -td, that is, *baza-td-, but 
D. baeznag ' thick ' and I. baezn ' thickness ' speak rather for 
zd < zn (see above under qaezmg). 

Sogd. Bud. -t\ -ih; -t, obi. -ty ; Man. (with t or t) -t\ -d' 
after n ; -t, -d (-tt), obi. -ty' 9 -ty'h, -tyy, -tyh, -dy' (Henning, 
BBB 57) ; Chr. -t 9 ; -*, obi. -ty. P. Tedesco (ZII 4 (1926) 149) 
and Benveniste (Gram. Sogd. 2. 79) derive this -t' from *-td. 
The oblique -ty excludes *-tds, with which C. Bartholomae 
(WZKM 30. 18) had identified -t\ NSogd. (Yaynabl) has -t, 
obi. -ti. Chorasmian -c, that is, ts, < t (A. Freiman, Khorezmij- 
skij Yazik 314). 

The -rat in the names Zap/zarat, Savpo^arai appears to 
be a Greek adaptation of this same suffix -td as plural ending, 
beside which the old nominal ending -d (which has left traces 
also in Sogdian, and in As after numerals) is probably pre- 


supposed by such Greek plurals as "AXavoi without -rat. 
The arguments of Max Vasmer (Streitberg Festgabe (1924) 373) 
against the identification of -rat, with this -td ending do not 
seem to carry weight. The explanation of the sarma- of 
Zapfjiarai as related to Avestan sairima- (ZorPahl. NPers. 
salm) is almost certain (see H. H. Schaeder, Iranica 50-1). 
The Hungarian loanword ezte ' year ' used as a singular but 
taken from an As form corresponding to Iron asztae ' years ', 
plural, likewise attests the early existence of -tas. The doubts 
of G. Schmidt (Zurfroge der ossetisch-ungarischen lehnworter 91) 
seem to me implausible. Foreign words in the plural used 
as singulars in the borrowing language are well known : Engl. 
magazine is the Arabic plural maxdzin ' stores ', Ital. cherubino 
is made from a Semitic plural in -in or -I'm, and cherubims 
has been used in English. The Magyar etymologiai szotdr, 
ed. Gombocz and Melich, thought, hardly rightly, of a 
shortening from esztendo. 

No use of -td to form a plural has been noted in Khotanese. 
It has, however, always been usual to quote the parallel 
Avestan use of -tat- as in Yasna 32. 15 (Ga#a) karapo.tdscd 
kdvitdscd ' the priests and princes ' with the -tat- suffix 
expressing a collective plural beside Yasna 46. 11 'karapano 
kdvayascd with the usual nom. plural endings. Note too 
the treatment of the abstract suffix -tat- as an independent 
word in Av. yavaeca tdite, with -ca between the two com- 
ponents of yavaetdt- ' eternity ', and Pasto tdstyd ' emptiness ' 
< *tusya-tdti-, with -t- treated as an initial (since medial -t- 
became -1-, Morg. NTS 12. 93). Khotanese has similarly 
ttussdttdtd ' emptiness ' < *tusyaka-tdti- (for this and other 
forms of this sumx, see JRAS 1942. 27-8). It should be added 
that -tat- survives in Sogd. Man. fryt't ' love ' (Henning, 
BBB 125). 

43. tunse D., tin I. represent two different words 1. ' cloth ', 
2. ' ray of light ' both < *6auna- < *tafna- from the bases 
tap- 1. ' to spin ' 2. ' to shine '. 

(1) tunas, tin ' cloth ' < *0auna-. 

Khotan. thauna-, later thaum, than, ' cloth, silk ' < *tafna-, 


frequently mentioned in official documents (see BSOS 10. 599). 
In the Siddhasara 141 v 3 kuJiam thaujsa ' with an old cloth ' 
renders Sanskr. cailapatta. From Khotanese or a related 
dialect the Uigur Turks borrowed ton ' garment ', written 
torn in Brahmi script (BSOS 9. 295), as H. H. Schaeder 
indicated to H. Liiders (Textilien im alien Turkistan 24). 
A Central Asian Sanskrit form *thavana, miswritten thacana, 
was earlier quoted from a Chinese-Sanskrit Lexicon (BSOS 
8. 917, from P. C. Bagchi, Deux lexiques sanscrit-chinois 
I 48, 279). The assumption that tunas derives through *6auna- 
is due partly to the comparison of the parallel case of xau- 
' fall ' from *kaf- and other cases of x < k (see below on xauri), 
where x survives in As, while all 6 have become t ; and partly 
because of the Khotanese form thauna. No Sogdian form 
has yet been pointed out. Meantime I see Morgenstierne 
has recognized both words (NTS 12. 267). 

(2) tunae, tin ' ray of light ' < *6auna- < *tafna-. Pam. 
2. 150 has xori tuntse ' rays of the sun '. Yazgulami 6m ' fire, 
hearth ' < *6auna- < *tafna- (R. Gauthiot, JA 1916. 1. 253, 
268, Morg. Report on . . . Afghanistan 23). In Chorasmian 
d'w- *6du- ' to burn ' derives from *taf- (see Ahmed Zeki 
Walidi, Islamica 17 Hwdrezmische Sdtze in einem arabischen 
FIQH-Werke, sentence 10). Similarly Suyni Ban-. 

44. ua-, see ca- above. 

45. uadzin, D. uadzun, ptc. uayd ' allow, let go, dismiss ' 
< *vdc-. 

Sogd. Bud. w'c-, w'yt ; Man. w'6-, yw'nw'cyy ' absolution ' 
(passim in P ; Henning, BBB 136). 

46. uasin, uast, D. uasun ' make a sound (beasts, birds, 
instruments) ', nmudsm, nmudsidi, D. niuuasun ' idem '. 

Khotan. bdsa-, P 2781. 91 hastyna hwi bdsd ' the trumpeting 
of elephants ', nvdsa- ' noise ', P 2783. 2 rathd nvdsd u dpmd 
1 roar, noise and smoke ' in describing a battle (BSOS 10. 588), 
nvdssmdd ' they make a noise ' (E 25. 503). 

47. uat ID. ' bed, sleeping-room, room '. 

Sogd. Bud. w'S- '.bed': cnn w'Sy mnyz 'he rose from 
bed ' Dhuta 225 ; Man. "x'sw'Syy ' battle-field '. The word 


is considered by Henning (Sogdica 26). 0. Hansen (Zur 
soghdischen Inschrift auf dem dreisprachigen Denkmal von 
Karabalgasun 39) compared w'S- with As uat. Since As 
uat represents, if normally transmitted, *vdOa- with 0, the 
comparison depends upon the value of Sogdian 8 which may 
represent either 9 or d. Sogd. Chr. uses t for older 6 as r't 
1 road ', Sogd. Bud. r'S- *rdO, but no certain Chr. form for w'8- 
appears to have been found. 

48. term, uorm, orm, D. uaermae ' hole ' ; loc. sing, orml 
'in a pit' (Mat. 12. 11). 

Agnean 229 a 2 warm-am loc. sing. ' in a pit ' (conjecturally, 
see Sieg, Siegling, and Schultze, Tocharische Grammatik 53). 

Sogd. Bud. wrm'ycyh ' in a hole ' (P 2. 272), is plausible. 
Ilya Gershevitch directed my attention to this passage. 

A different meaning was developed in Khotan. bdrmana- 
1 prison ', ZorPahl. varm, NPers. barm ' reservoir ' (J. Tavadia, 
Sdyast ne sdyast 2. 22). Both *varma- ' hole ' and *varma- 
' reservoir ' derive from var- * to cover, enclose '. The two 
Armenian loanwords varm ' net ' and vermak ' coverlet ' belong 

Georgian ormo ' hole ' is derived from As orm. The final -o 
is frequent in Georgian in two uses, 1. to foreign words, as 
amo ' pleasant ', Armen. ham ' taste ', poso, posov-i, Armen. 
p'os ' foss ' (from Latin-Greek fossa, ^ocrcra), roc'ik'o ' salary ' 
(Glossary to the Georgian Shdhndmah), Armen. focik, spero 
' ball ', Armen. sp'ef (cr^alpa), sp'ilo ' elephant ', NPers. pll, 
Osmalo ' Turk ', Qabardo ' Kabardia ' ; 2. to form hypocoristic 
names Andro, Ivano, Mixak'o, P'et'o. The alternation va- ~ o- 
is found both in As and in Georgian : note in Georgian k'oml-i, 
k'vaml-i ' family ', diak'on-i, diak'van-i ' deacon ', amilaxvar-i, 
amilaxor-i ' equerry '. A special case is Georgian gvar-i 
' kind, sort, family ', am-gvar-ad ' so ', qovel-gvar l of all 
kinds ', beside -gor- in ro-gor-i ' of what kind ', both from 
MidPers. gohr ' nature, kind '. The word spread to the 
Circassian languages : Abzax gware, gwar9, gor9 and others, 
see G. Dumezil, Etudes comparatives sur les langues caucasiennes 
du nord-ouest (1932) 37. A. Dirr (Caucasica 4. 81) had briefly 


conjectured a connection of the Ubix form with Georgian 
gvar-i. For -or- from -ohr, note also Georgian zor-va * to 
sacrifice ', MidPers. zohr. 

Hungarian verem (verem) ' foss ' belongs to As userm 
(H. Skold, Die ossetischen Lehnworter im Ungarischen 39 ; 
G. Schmidt, Zurfrage der ossetisch- ungarischen lehnworte 98). 

49. uis, D. ues ' scrub ' < *vaitsa- ; xaeris, D. xaerues 
' willow ' ; uisqaed, D. uesyaedae l maple ' ; uisoi, D. uesoinae 
' a broom ' (see Morg. IIFL 2. 264 ; NTS 12. 269). 

Khotan. bisu, besu ' bush, tree ' : immdinai bisu (Siddha- 
sara 9 r 1) ' castor-oil bush ' ; barasijd hwl besu ' juniper 
bush ' (ibid. 152 r 1). 

50. -un, I. -In, verbal noun inflected in the singular and in 
the -tae plural (see V. Miller, GIF Ossetisch 67 ; R. von Stackel- 
berg, Beitrdge zur Syntax des Ossetischen 84). The following 
passages illustrate further uses. With the verb kaen- a transi- 
tive and a causative are formed : 1. irvaezingaenaeg, D. yervae- 
zungxnaeg ' saviour ' (Diet. s.v. ; John 4. 42), where k > g 
as in a compound ; 2. banazinkaen * give to drink ' (John 4, 7), 
qusln kodta ' he made to hear ' (Diet. s.v. uadzlri). With case- 
endings : Allat. kastsen das faszzinnunmas ( I looked for your 
appearing ' (Pam. 2. 94) ; Ablat. xaennaei flldaer ( more than 
eating ' (Diet. s.v. aevzoli), p'ataekasninaei ' from kissing ' 
(Luke 7. 45) ; Gen. udon bafsodlnl tixxaei ' to satisfy them ' 
(John 6. 5) ; Superess. xonunbael ' to call ' (Pam. 2. 93). 
The suffix -dzinod is frequently attached : xucamfaundzinasdtae 
c pXacrfaiJiia ' (Mark 7. 22), irvaezindzinad * salvation ' (John 
4. 22), smUdlndzinad ' fragrance ' (Diet. s.v.). A plural 
occurs in qusintUfaeci ' he listened ' (Bulsemaery 10). 

The As -un, -In could represent various Old Iranian syllables 
-un-, -aun-, -a^n-, -afn-, see under tunas. If we assume that 
the -un is derived from *-auna < *avan- we have a develop- 
ment of the Indo-European *-uen-, whence a derivative in 
-vana- is found in Av. dfrivana- MidParth. 'frywn, see above 
arfse. But within Iranian the Sogd. Bud. -wny, Man. -wrfyy, 
-wny seems more directly comparable. Bud. kr'wny ' action 
de faire, formation ' (P 2. 269, 347) is from the verbal base to--. 


Man. kmbwnyy, -ny ' diminution ' (Henning, BBB 127) is 
connected with an adjectival *kamba- ' little ', Bud. t'y'wny 
' theft ' (P 9. 15) and yVwny ' theft ' (SCE, Gram. Sogd. II 98) 
are derived from nouns. Khotan. -una : haydrund- ' desire ' 
(see Konow, Khotansak. Gram. 69) may also be compared, 
if -un- is from -aun-. 

51. xaun, xaud ID. 'to fall ', xausen ID. ' fall, place of 
fall ' < *xav- < *kaf-. 

Khotan. has-, ptc. kasta- ' to fall ' < *kaf-s- with -s- kept 
in the participle as in dlsta- ' ripened ' < *dax-s- < *dag- 
' to burn, ripen '. With preverb a- occurs d-tas- in E 25. 168 
kye vd pdstumgga dtasdre ' or who fall down headlong ' (as 
often -t- replaces older -k-). 

MidParth. kf-, kft (A. Ghilain, Essai sur la langue parthe 56) ; 
ZorPahl. kaft (loanword from the northern dialect). 

Khotan. kuham ' old ' < *kafvana-, corresponds to 
MidParth. kfwn, MidPers. qhwn, NPers. kuhan ' old ', as 
from ' decadent ' (Henning, BSOS 9. 84). 

Initial k- is replaced by x- also in other As words : 
1. x&fs ' toad, frog ' ; uorftn x&fs ' tortoise ' (V. Miller, 
Beitrdge zur osset. Etymologic, Memnon, 1910, no. 18) from 
*kasapa < *kasyapa-, attested in Sanskr. kasyapa-, kacchapa-, 
Av. kasyapa- (a daeva creature), NPers. kasaf, Pasto kasap, 
kasp ( tortoise ' (Morg. EVP 34) ; 2. xaef, D. xaefx ' slime, 
pus ', Khotan. khavd- ' foam ', Munjani xaf ' foam ', Av. kafa-, 
NPers. kaf, Sanskr. kapha- (other dialectal forms are given 
by Zarubin, Iran I 178) ; 3. xaersun, xaessun D., xsessin I. 
' carry ' < *kars- ' draw ', Av. kars-, NPers. kas- ; 4. xin, 
D. xindB ' trickery ; adj. deceitful ', Av. kaend- ' vengeance ', 
Sogd. Bud. kyn ' hate, vengeance ', NPers. km ' malice ' ; 
5. xsedz, D. x&dzse ' hook ', xddzonteg, Kadzon&g ' hook ', 
k'sedz 'crooked', MidParth. kz- 'crooked', NPers. kazz 
(Henning, BSOS 9. 84). In this last case for x < k beside k', 
note xlssse, Vissse, D. k'insae ' dough '. On xunk ', see below. 

52. xsetdzse, xsedcae; xsedzdzse (^Embaelti Cock'o, Nartl 
Xsemlcl flrt Batradzl Taurseytse, Tale 3), D. xaetcae, xaedzcae, 
xseccse. The Digor word is a postposition corresponding to 


Iron 4msB ' with '. In Iron the word is adj. and sb. : xsetcx 
1. ' mixing ' 2. adj. ' mixed', x&tcse kaenin ' to mix ', also 
aemxaedcde ' mixing ', semxsedcas ksenin ' to mix ', D. asmxaedcde, 
senx&dcse ' mixing '. 

Khotan. hamtsa ' together with ' used with jsa ' with '. 
In one place (BSOS 10. 581) of the Kama text hamtse may be 
an abstract ' being together '. The word is derived from 
ham- ' with '. 

If the As and Khotanese words belong together the initial x 
of As will be a replacement of h-. In As initial h- either drops 
or is replaced by x : avd ' 7 ', asm- ' together ', ayd ' loins ' 
(*hafta, *ham-, *haxti-), beside xid, D. xed * bridge ' (see 
below), xizln, D. xezun ' to rise ' (see below). In xom ' raw ' 
< *dma-, x has been prefixed, as we have Sogd. Bud. ym 
(SCE) and Khotan. hdma- ' raw ', and in NPers. xdm. A final 
foreign h is replaced by x in patcax ' sovereign ', NPers. 
pddisdh (possibly not directly from NPers.). These treat- 
ments of h imply a period of instability or complete loss of 
h in As. 

53. xid, D. xed ' bridge ' < *haitu-. 

Sogd. Bud. ytkw (SCE 539), NSogd. (Yaynabl) itk ; Khotan. 
hi (BSOS 10. 373) : Jn ndya sagyau uca ' now build a bridge 
with stones in the water ' (P 2783. 85), with hi < *haitu-, 
as bi * willow ' < *vaiti- ; Av. haetu-. The word survives 
in Afghanistan as Jiil- in the river name Hilmand Av. 
Haetumant-, 'ErviLavSpos, ZorPahl. Het'omand (GrBund. 
89. 9 with the replacement of -mand by the common 'wmnd). 
In xed Old Iran. *hai- has become xe-. This change occurred 
also in D. xezun < *haiz- (see below). Note that -u is not 
preserved in As : so also /Is, D. fus ' cattle ' < *pasu- and 
mid, D. mud * honey ' < *madu (Sogd. Bud. mSw, Khotan. 

Hungarian (old) heed, (new) hid ' bridge ' and Georgian 
xid-i (older xid-) derive from the same source. G. Schmidt's 
objections, at a time when all the evidence could not be 
known, seem of little weight (Zurfrage der ossetisch-ungarischen 
lehnworter 93-4 ; Zur erforschung der ossetisch-ungarischen 


lehnbeziehungen 28 ff.). Had we not had xed < *haitu- in 
As we should have had paradoxically to assume its former 
existence there. V. I. Abaiev seems also to have doubted 
the derivation of xed < *haitu- according to the summary 
of his Alanica in ZDMG 93 (1939) 36 by D. Gerhardt, but 
I have not seen it. 1 

54. xfstser, D. xestser adj. sb. ' elder, eldest ' with xi-, xe- 
< *hvai-. 

Sogd. Bud. ywysik ' revered, teacher ', ywystr- ' master ' ; 
Man. xwystr ' superior, master ' (Henning, BBB 139) ; Chr. 
xwsty ' teacher ' (see F. Rozenberg, Orient. Literatur-Zeit. 
1929, 194-200 reviewing H. Keichelt's Soghdische Hand- 
schriftresten I). Av. hvoista-, Munjani xusci, xusk v e are given 
by Morgenstierne (IIFL 2. 269). Khotan. hvdsta- ' best, 
eldest ' is not directly comparable (unless -a- replaces an 
older di ?). Maralbasi Iranian has hvesta. 

Beside xistder we find the antonym ksestser ID. ' least, 
youngest ', to which Sogd. Bud. kstr (P 11. 35), and Chr. 
qstr correspond. Mat. 25. 40 has en y'nt mn' br't'rt qstrf ' from 
the least of my brothers '. Add Pasto kasr l younger ' (Morg. 
BVP 34). 

55. xizin, xist, D. xezun ' climb, pass over ' < *haiz-. 
Sogd. Bud. yyz- in z'y-yyz'k ' creeping on the earth ' 

(P 2. 1110) ; Man. z'yxyzyy (Henning, BBB 140). See also 
Gram. Sogd. ii, 21. MidPers. xez-, dxez- ' rise ', praxez-, 
vihez- (with h), MidPers. Psalter 'hyc- *dhez- (Henning, Das 
Verbum des Mittelpersischen der Turfan fragmente 178), 
vhycyt, vhycwmy (Paikuli inscription, Parsik), NPers. ristdxiz 
' resurrection '. Neither Sogdian nor Persian decide between 
x- and h-. 

Khotan. pahlys-, pahdsta- ' flee ', vahiys-, vahdsta- 
' descend ', bihiys- ' decrease '. Since intervocalic kh is 
replaced by h in bihan- ' to laugh ' beside khan- ( < xand-), 

1 I particularly regret that I have seen only Abaiev's article on As 
accentuation and none of his later writings, and that I have not seen 
V. JEi. ./Elborti's Grammar of Iron 1925 (known to me from Bouda's reference, 
Caucasica 11. 49). 


but kh becomes ch after pati-, only pahiys- aids to a decision. 
Thus pachus- ' vanish ' < *pai-xuvs- < *pati-kufs- and 
pachiys- ' to be called ' < *pai-xez- < *pati-xaiz- beside 
hamkhiys- ' to count '. Hence pahiys- from *pati-haiz- with -h- 
kept (not from *apa-haiz-, as proposed by Konow, Saka Studies 
164, just as patdlt- ' to cut ' is to be compared with Sogd. ptkrnt-, 
with pati- not apa-) supports a base haiz-. In one passage 
Siddhasara 129 r 1 (in a diagnosis of sciatica) it is stated cvai 
hurdvud bdta tr&me, u ni ra butta tsai, u pdrvd u hamgustdm 
hamdrrye vya bdta tti hiysde u paste, u ne ra tsva himye, bete 
jsa, arrdettd ndma dchai ' when the wind enters the limbs, 
and can no longer go, and the wind in the heels and between 
the fingers then rises and starts, and can no more go, it is the 
wind disease called ardita '. The word hiysde would give a base 
*haiz- but a doubt must remain since tti might be a preverb 
(Old Iran, ati-), and not adverb. The Tibetan and Sanskrit 
texts do not clarify this point. 

Av. pdiri.haez- occurring once in Videvdat 21. 4 usihista 
pdiri. haezanuha ' rise up, go around ' of which the ZorPahl. 
translation 'phzn is partly transliteration, gives a further fairly 
sure foundation for assuming *Jiaiz- not xaiz-. 

56. xos, D. xuasae ' hay, medicinal herb, remedy '. 

Khotan. hvdssa- E, hvdsa-, hvdta- (BSOS 10. 590) ' herb ', 
translating also Tib. Idum-bu ' vegetation '. The equation 
As -as- = Khotan. -ass- excludes a connection with vdstra, 
as given in Morgenstierne's discussion of Pasto wds9 (EVP 93), 
since in Khotanese str is not replaced by ss (vdsta- ' garment ' 
< *vastra-). If Khotan. huss- ' to grow ', ptc. hussdta-, Caus. 
husdna- < *vaxs- : uxs- is compared, hvdssa- can represent 
*vaxsa- with secondary h- due to huss- (cf. before a vowel 
hdma- ' raw ' < dma-, hdlaa- ' direction ' < *ardaka). For 
-ass-, cf. rrasa- ' brown ' < *raxsa-, NPers. raxs. 

Sogd. Bud. 'yws'y- ' to grow ' (P six times), that is, *axusdy- 
also has a secondary prothesis similar to that in 'ywstr *axustr 
1 camel ' (so, rather than vaxs- > xvas- in view of the 
Khotanese). An unexplained x appears also in NPers. xurd 
compared with Pasto wur ' small ' (Morg. EVP 92). 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. D 


57. xfcm, D. xumae ' field ', xumg&nd, xumgond, D. 
xungasndse, xungond ' cultivation '. 

Sogd. Bud. ywrmh VJ 1464 ' earth, soil ' ; Man. xwrm 
xrwm (I. Gersevic, JRAS 1942, 101 ; F. W. K. Miiller, Die 
' persischen ' Kolendarausdrucke im chinesischen Tripitaka 3) ; 
Sarikoli xorm ' dust ' (Shaw, The Ghalchah Languages 73, 
quoted from Tomaschek by F. W. K. Muller). With this 
Gershevitch compares Av. paxruma- ' made of earth ', found 
only in Videvdat 2. 23 as an epithet of nmdna- ' dwellings '. 

If the As word is the same as the Sogd. *xurm-, xrum 
and Av. -xruma-, the phonetic difference rm m is unusual. 
I cannot quote a second case of m < rm ; the group rm is 
maintained in Jcurm ' blind '. There is, however, a certain 
instability about the groups rm, rn. Morgenstierne (NTS 
12. 268) has explained listzen, D. listaen * straw-bed ' from 
*frastarana- with n < rn in secondary contact, and also 
fir, D. fur ' ram, wether ' < *prna-. Similarly D. yardon 
corresponds to I. qsermaedon ' hot mineral water ', beside qarm, 
D. yar, yarm ' hot '. 

58. xtink% plur. xunc'i'tse ' hole, pit J ; D. xunk"i gen. sing. 
(V. Miller, GIF Ossetisch 43). 

Khotan. khy,ne, gen. plur. khyndm * hole ' (Siddhasara 
102 r 5, v 1), khu-naka ' small hole ' (P 2783. 9, BSOS 10. 373) ; 
adj. khundjsa- ' with holes ' (N 50. 30). 

If a secondary x < h were assumed in the As word, a 
connection with Av. una- ' hole ' (whence ZorPahl. unak, 
GrBund. 94. 15 unik ' living in holes ', Indian Bund. 29. 7 
(Pazand) xuni) would be possible, but in Khotanese the 
prothetic h- survives as h- in hdma- * raw ' (see above under 
xsedcde). The alternative is to assume x < k (as under xaun 
above), and to compare Kurdish (Boxti) kun l hole ', as in 
sdr kune mart ' on the snake's hole ' (K. Hadank, Unter- 
zuchungen zum Westkurdischen : Boti und Ezddi (1938), 
tale III) ; similarly Yazidi be-kun bu ' it had no hole ' (= Arab. 
bild taxallul, Mashaf ras 11, ed. Bittner, Die Heiligen Bucher 
der Jeziden 55, 56, see also Jaba-Justi, Diet. kun). ZorPahl., 
NPers. kun is the same word. 


For the suffix -k\ -k'a, -k, -ka, -k\ -k'%, -q&, -k, -kae compare 
the following : Usk', D. lisk'ae ' nit ' ; siVa, sk'a beside si 
1 horn ' ; fink, D. finkae ' foam ' < *faina- ; caeu, cseuk'a 
1 goat ' ; sink', D. sunk' 93 ' swelling ' < *suna- to rsesiin, 
D. r&suyun ' to swell ' ; fir, D.fur ' wether \flrtta, T>.furk'a 
' young wether ' ; sink, D. sunk ' sewing ', utexsk, D. uaesk\ 
usqae ' shoulder ' ; aelxlstt, D. asxsilk'ae ' pinch, nip '. 

59. zaeruae, zasruai D. ' old age ', zaeruaemae, zderuaimae ' to 
old age ' beside zasrond ID. ' old '. The Dictionary (s.v. xoi) 
quotes Pam. 2. 11 mae zderuse min xoitae daer ma bazudtoncae 
1 my old age even the ravens know '. For the ending -uae, 
note the following : D. k&rude, kaerae l name of an edible herb ' ; 
D. qaruae, 1 qarse, qaurae, I. qaru ' ability ' ; D. p'aruae, p'arse, 
I. X3BTV ' epidermis, slough, veil ' ; D. aerxuae, I. eerx ' ravine, 
hollow ' ; D. destdenk'uae, I. staenq ' morocco leather ' ; D. 
fxrux, I. fserv i alder ' ; D. druse, cirae, I. cirv ' yeast ' (cf. 
Morg. EVP s.v. triw l sour '). 

Sogd. Bud. zrwh l old age ' (Vim. 113, Dhyana 230), 'wyh 
zrwyh ' in old age ' (P 2. 152), cwn zrwyh ( from old age ' 
(P 2. 324, 1140). 

60. The Old Iranian optative forms are employed in Digor 
to express a durative past (see V. Miller, GIP Ossetisch 76, 
80). This use was recognized by P. Tedesco (ZII 2. 296-301) 
in Avestan and Sogdian ; and in the NSogdian (Yaynabi) 
preterite. The same use was pointed out in Khotanese (BSOS 
10. 593, 907). For OPersian, see E. Benveniste below, p. 50. 

The following etymologies, since they do not show exclusive 
connection between the As and the Sogdian or Khotanese, 
are given apart from the others. 

61. ardaun ID. ' complain, abuse ', ptc. I. ardid < *d-drdv-, 
MidParth. dr'w-, MidPers. dr'y- ; Sogd. Man. z'y- ' speak ' 
(Henning, BBB 126), ZorPahl. dray- ' speak ' (of devs). 

1 If qaruae. is < *garba-, Sogd. Bud. yr)3-, beside yrfikh ' understanding, 
wisdom ', yr/3- (Bud., Man.) ' to know ' are comparable. 


V. Miller, IF 21, no. 27, had thought of the base drav- l to 
run ' from ' urging ' dogs on. 

62. sefsondz, D. asfsoi ' yoke ' < *fsdn(.)c- from *fsdna- 
' neck, shoulder-blade ' attested by Khotan. ksdna E 21. 45 
(which I was able to show Professor Konow in time for his 
grammar (p. 109)), ZorPahl. s'nk (GrBund. 215. 5, recognized 
here by R. C. Zaehner), NPers. sdnah. In the sense of ' comb ' 
Pasto has zmandz < *f fan-Si- (Morg. EVP 106, NTS 12. 89 
with many other forms). The group fs <fs is found also in 
aefsaerm ID. ' shame ', Khotan. ksdrma-, Sogd. Bud. s/3'r, 
ip'rm'k ; Man. sfr (Henning, BBB 135). For ndz and y, 
see above under delxmc*. 

63. ssgas ' whole, well, ahve ' ID. < *a-kdsa- ' not deficient ', 
to ZorPahl. kds-, NPers. kdh-, kdstan i to diminish ', Armen. 
loan-word pakas-em ' fail, diminish ' (A. Meillet, Rev. des 
Et. Armen. 2 (1922) 6). For this way of expressing ' whole- 
ness ' by a negative, cf. Sanskr. akhila- ' whole ', khila- ' supple- 
mentary ', asesa- ' whole ', Lat. integer > Engl. entire. V. Miller, 
IF 21, no. 4, starting from ' alive ', compared Sanskr. sakdsa-. 

64. selxoi, D. aelxoinse ' small pestle ' < *grd(u)nya-. On 
selx- < *gr-, see above zelxinc' < *grandya-. This then pro- 
vides an Iranian connection of Sanskr. grdvan- ' stone to 
press soma ', Old Engl. cweorn ' quern ' (see Walde-Pokorny, 
Vergl. Worterbuch d. indogerm. Sprachen I 685, where other 
Indo-European forms are to be found). V. Miller, IF 21, 
no. 7, assuming too narrow a meaning, sought a word for 
' salt ' with the base x&i- ' to beat '. He did not quote the 
Digor form. 

65. selxui, D. selxuinde ' handle of spindle, spindle ' 

< *graunya- from the base grab- ' to take '. On -aun-, -avn-, 
-afn- > -un-, see above tunas and add fin, D. fun ' sleep ' 

< *hvafna-. 

66. sint ' litter, bier ', u&lsmt ' upon a bier '. Digor has 
sintcB in masrd-sintas ' bier ' (' corpse-bier ') ; also I. slntseg 
* bed '. Here sin-, sin- < *sayana : ' place to lie down ' 
from say-, Sanskr. sayana- ( bed '. The suffix -t, -tae, if old, 


would represent 6, or like k in fink, D. finkae ' foam ' may 
be a later addition, to be compared with -t in mist, D. mistae 
1 mouse '. Ought Uigur Turkish syn ' sepulchre ' to be 
compared ? 

67. urz, urdz, D. urz ' finger-tip ' < *rzu-. The -u has 
modified the ar- ( < r) of the first syllable, as in mid, D. mud 
1 honey ' < *madu, Khotan. mau. Similarly V. Miller, IF 21, 
no. 74. 

Av. dT9zu- ' finger '. 

68. zseyin, zayd, D. zxyun ' to say ' < *zag-. If dz in 
fsedzsexsln, D. fasdzaexsun ( entrust, enjoin, assure ' could 
represent -iz- (on fae- < *pai-, see above under faeinte), it 
could be explained as *pati-zax-s-. For dz < z, cf. also 
daeldzaBX ' under the earth, the underworld ' : zdex 
' earth '. 

Mid. Parth. zxs- tr., intr. ' to sound ' (A. Ghilain, Essai sur 
la langue parthe 81) < *zag- (but *zak- would also be possible). 
NPers. zay t raven, crow ' could represent *zdga- from a 
base *zag- ' to sound ', a process in naming a bird which 
recalls the name of the cock : Gothic hana ' cock ' beside 
Latin cano ' I sing ' ; Lith. gaidys ' cock ', giedu ' I sing ' 
(Walde-Pokorny, Vergl Worterbuch I 666). Also Sogd, z'y. 

As a further indication of Iranian in Georgian beside those 
mentioned above under uderm, the following is worthy of* 

nask'-va ' to make a knot ', nask'-v-i ' a knot '. The suffix 
-va is added to foreign nouns to form verbs, as in zor-va 
'to sacrifice', ZorPahl. zohr, Armen. zoh; t'anj-va 'to 
torment ', Armen. tanj-em (from Iranian). The nominal 
-v-i is found, e.g. in p'inc-v-i ' nostril ', Armen. pine, As 
findz, D. findz, fiy ' nose ', and mog-v-i ' shoe ' (translating 
NPers. mozah, Visramiani 203 = Pers. text, ed. Minovi 257), 
ZorPahl. mok, Armen. moyk, moyg (H. Hiibschmann, Armen. 
Gram. I 196). If nask'- is from Iranian, we have a non- 


technical meaning for *naska- which in Av. naska-, ZorPahl. 
nask is specialized to mean ' fasciculus ' of a religious book. 

In the course of this article etymologies are proposed also 
for the following words : 

aely s.v. aelxinc', aembai s.v. falaembulai, aeryiu, bale s.v. 
aelxlnc', faedzaexsm s.v. zaeyln, faezzaeg s.v. faeinse, -gai s.v. 
falaembulai, qal s.v. iraezun, kaestaer s.v. xistaer, xai s.v. 
falaembulai, xaedz, xaefs s.v. xaun, xaelc s.v. aelxinc', xin s.v. 
xaun, xoll s.v. dassni, zaex s.v. faeinae. 


To p. 13 : I. Gershevitch has given me Sogd. Man. pty'z 
' autumn '. 

To p. 14 : K. V. Trever in the Travaux du departement 
oriental II, Musee de 1'Ermitage 1940, just come into my 
hands, has a paper on Gopatsah. 

To p. 15 : I find that E. Schwyzer, in a footnote Zeits. f. 
vgl. sprachf. 63 (1936) 151, threw out the conjecture that 
As i was of the same origin as NPers. i. 

To p. 19 : Add that OPersian uses hya as an article. 





Nous devons aux efforts patients et heureux de E. Herzfeld 
la lecture a peu pres complete d'une importante inscription 
de Darius a Naqs i Rustam (NR 6). Ce texte qui abonde en 
nouveautes, en difficultes aussi, a ete commente par E. Herzfeld 
lui-meme et par R. G. Kent. 1 Dans 1'etude qui suit, nous 
essayons de contribuer a 1'interpretation du sens general 
et a la solution de plusieurs problemes de detail. 

Des 1'eulogie liminaire apparaissent des notions nouvelles, 
specifiees en formules particulieres a cette inscription. Darius 
rend graces a Ahuramazda d'avoir cree d'abord " ces choses 
merveilleuses qu'on voit " (ima frasam tya vainataiy) ; puis, 
le " bonheur " pour 1'homme, cette siydti qui est le " bonheur " 
terrestre correlatif a la " felicite" dans 1'au-dela ; enfin, deux 
qualites attributes personnellement a Darius : xradu- et 
aruvasta-. Ici nous avons les deux notions fondamentales 
qui vont commander et expliquer le texte entier. L'inscription 
est en effet destinee a illustrer chacune de ces deux qualites, 
par une enumeration des circonstances ou elles se manifestent 
dans la conduite du roi. 

xradu- dont on traduisait les formes vedique et avestique par 
" force mentale ", 2 designe ici la " sagesse ". Ce xradu inspire 
les dispositions morales de Darius et constitue le fondement 
de sa justice et de sa rectitude. Suivre en toutes choses 1'equite 
la plus stricte ; ne favoriser ni le faible ni le fort aux depens 
1'un de 1'autre ; etre maitre de soi et contenir sa colere ; 

1 Herzfeld, Altpersische Inschriften, 1938, passim. Kent, Language, 
XV, 1939, pp. 166-179. 

Voir Fetude detaiUee de K. Ronnow, Monde Oriental, XXVI, 1932, 
pp. 1-90. 


retribuer chacun selon ce qu'il aura fait pour cooperer avec 
lui, voila, dit Darius, de quelle nature sont mon intelligence 
et ma sagesse. 

Moins facile a interpreter est le second terme aruvastam. 
Mais nous avons le secours de 1'etymologie : aruvasta- est 
1'abstrait de 1'adjectif av. aurvant, ved. arvant- " vif, agile, 
rapide " et devrait d'abord signifier " vivacite, agilite ". Le 
sens peut en etre plus exactement defini grace au fait que ce 
mot aruvasta se trouve comrne emprunt en armenien sous la 
forme aruest qui signifie " habilete, capacite, art ", 1 Le mot 
perse designe done 1'aptitude physique, et comme il ressort 
du parallelisme entre xraOu et aruvasta que les deux qualites 
sont correlatives, on est en droit de conclure que aruvasta 
designe dans 1'ordre corporel une aptitude semblable a xradu 
dans 1'ordre intellectual et moral. C'est 1'habilete dans les 
exercices physiques et plus generalement le talent de reussir 
dans la pratique, 1'aptitude a faire passer dans les faits les 
decisions inspirees par le xra6u. On pourrait le traduire 
" talent corporel, habilete a reussir (pratiquement) ". Une 
autre donnee du texte confirme cette definition : aruvasta 
est mis en liaison avec huvnara-, ou nous retrouvons un mot 
iranien bien connu (av. hunara-, phi. hunar, etc.) signifiant 
" excellence, habilete, sagesse pratique ", et 1'akkadien traduit 
aruvasta- et huvnara- par le meme mot itbdrutu. 2 On peut 
done tenir pour certain que aruvasta- designe le fait d'exceller 
dans les exercices physiques et plus generalement le fait de 
reussir dans la pratique. 

Le debut du developpement relatif aux preuves de Yaruvasta- 

1 Je m'accorde sur 1'essentiel avec H. H. Schaeder, OLZ. 1940, pp. 289 sqq., 
qui a reconnu le sens de aruvasta- en y comparant arm. aruest. Mais il me 
parait restreindre a 1'exces 1'acception du mot perse en le traduisant 
" Riistigkeit " ; le texte meme indique une definition plus large. M. Schaeder 
a vu aussi que 1'opposition entre xraOu- et aruvasta- donne la clef de 1'inter- 
pretation. Je retrouve en outre aruvasta dans un nom propre d'Elephan- 
tine, reste obscur (ed. Cowley, Aram. Pap., n 6, 1. 21) "IDnDIHX. c'est 
a dire 'rwst-mr, aruvastamara ; cf. les noms 'i^/ictpiys = *hu-mara et, 
chez les Mitannis, artassumara = rta-smara. 

2 H. H. Schaeder a resolu la dimculte que presentait ce mot en derivant 
itbdrutu non de eberu (Herzfeld), mais de abaru " etre fort ". 


dii roi s'articule autour des demonstratifs aita et ima pris 
dans leur acception propre : aita renvoyant a ce qui precede, 
ima annonant ce qui suit. Ces demonstratifs imposent done 
une coupe des phrases differente de celle qu'admettent 
Herzfeld et Kent : yaQdmaiy tya krtam vaindhy yadivd 
dxsnavdhy utd viOiyd utd spddmaidayd aitamaiy^ aruvastam 
upariy manasca usicd " quand tu vois ou entends ce que 
j'ai fait, tant en paix qu'en guerre, cela est ma reussite 
(pratique) en plus 2 de mon esprit et de mon intelligence". 
Voila une premiere definition. ~L'aruvasta- du roi se montre 
dans ses actes, dans ce qu'il a fait, et non plus seulement 
dans ses principes, et cette qualite a pour preuve toute sa 
conduite passee, a 1'interieur et au dehors. II continue : ima 
patimaiy aruvastam " voici aussi mon aruvasta- ", dont les 
exemples vont suivre maintenant ; ce sont ses exploits 
physiques : il s'amrme bon combattant, bon cavalier, bon 
archer, bon lancier. 

Mais remuneration de ces prouesses est rompue par une 
phrase assez longue, tres difficile, et qui semble etrangere 
a la suite des idees. Apres avoir enonce : " comme combattant, 
je suis bon combattant," Darius continue : hakaramciy usiyd 
gd[6a]vd vaindtaiy yaciy vaindmiy hamissiyam yaciy naiy 
vaindmiy utd usibiyd utd framdndyd adakaiy fratara maniyaiy 
afuvdyd yadiy vaindmiy hamissiyam yaOd yadiy naiy vaindmiy. 
Herzfeld traduit : " Wenn es meinem verstand zweifelhaft 
erscheine, wen ich als feind betrachten, wen ich (als) nicht- 
(feind) betrachten soil, ' Vor verstand und urteil ' alsdann 
' zuerst ' denke ich ' ist die giite ', auch wenn ich als feind 
betrachte, als ob ich (als) nicht-(feind) betrachte." Aussi 
peu claire est la traduction Kent : " Once let there be seen 
with understanding in the council, what I see (to be) hostile, 
what I see (to be) not (hostile) ; with understanding and with 
command then I am first to think of kindly acts, when I see 
an enemy as well as when I see a not(-enemy)." Ces traductions, 

1 Je ne sais pourquoi Herzfeld, suivi par Kent, interpole ici dtdiy, dont 
le texte n'a pas la moindre trace. La phrase se comprend sans cette addition. 

2 C'est le seul sens qui convienne ici a upariy. 


dans la mesure ou elles sont intelligibles, faussent assurement 
la suite des idees en y introduisant la notion de " bonte " 
qui y est etrangere. Je ne me flatte pas de 1'eclaircir definitive- 
ment, l car d'abord Interpretation se heurte a la forme 
etrange et probablement fautive afuvdyd ; en outre la version 
akkadienne semble avoir omis cette phrase ou en tout cas 
abrege si fort ce developpement que la correspondance est 
interrompue. Mais le sens general n'en est pas si mysterieux. 
Reprenons le texte membre a membre : hakaramciy usiyd 
gd[0a]vd vaindtaiy " quand il apparait . . . par 1'intelligence ". 
Que signifie gd[6a]vd ? Herzfeld veut, par une exegese trop 
ingenieuse, en faire un duel " en deux places ", ce qui voudrait 
dire " douteux ".' Kent traduit " in the council ", equivalent 
plus fidele, mais qu'est-ce que ce " conseil " vient faire au 
milieu des combats ? II faut maintenir le sens ordinaire de 
gd6u- " lieu, place ", done gddavd " sur place, sur le lieu 
meme ". Si Fenchainement des phrases a quelque logique, 
gddavd " sur place ", venant apres " je suis bon combattant ", 
signifie " sur le lieu du combat ". C'est ce que la suite confirme. 
" Quand par 1'intelligence il apparait sur place yaciy vaindmiy 
hamissiyam yaciy naiy vaindmiy ce que je considere comme 
ennemi et comme non-ennemi (litt. " ce que je ne considere 
pas [comme ennemi] ").... Ici une reprise qui est une 
repetition renforcee : utd usibiyd utd framdndyd " aussi bien 
par 1'intelligence que par le jugement " (insertion reprenant 
simplement usiyd) adakaiy fratara maniyaiy afuvdyd 
" alors . . .". Le mot nouveau afuvdyd de forme etrange et 
suspecte ne se prete a aucune etymologic. 2 Herzfeld, suivi 
par Kent, le corrige en aruvddd " Gnade ". II n'est pas besoin 
d'une correction aussi forte ; celle-ci en outre derange le 

1 Schaeder renonce memo a comprendre ces lignes : " Was freilich die 
Zeilen 34-40 besagen wollen, vermag ich einstweilen nicht zu erkennen " 
et il conclut : "Bis zum vollstandigen Verstandnis der Inschrift sind noch 
weite Wege zu gehen." 

2 Hinz, Altpers. Wortschatz, p. 44, garde " afuvdyd " et traduit " Ent- 
scheidung (?)". II rapporte que V. Pisani, Riv. di Studi Orient., XIX, 
1940, pp. 83-84, 1'interprete " proyvendimenti da prendere ". Je n'ai pu 
voir cet article de Pisani. 


raisonnement. Nous obtiendrons a moindres frais un sens 
meilleur en modifiant une seule lettre et en lisant aruvaya, 
mot egalement nouveau, mais de forme satisfaisante et qui 
s'apparente evidemment a aruvasta. Tout hypothetique 
qu'elle est, cette restauration fait reapparaitre le concept 
important qui lie en un tout ce developpement entier. 
L'opposition marquee au debut de Finscription entre xraOu- 
et aruvasta est reprise ici par le contraste voulu entre usiyd 
et *aruvdya. Je traduis done : " Alors je pense, je decide 
(maniyaiy) 1 par mon habilete (aruvaya), etant superieur 
(fratara), yadiy vaindmiy hamissiyam yadd yadiy naiy 
vainamiy, si je considere 1'ennemi comrne non-ennemi (litt. 
si je considere 1'ennemi comme si je ne le considerais pas)." 

En substance 1'idee est celle-ci : " Je suis bon combattant. 
Quand mon intelligence me fait discerner sur place ce qui 
est hostile et ce qui ne Test pas, alors ma superiorite au combat 
me permet de decider si je dois considerer comme ennemi ou 
non celui que j'ai en face de moi." Je ne donne pas cette 
phrase pour un modele d'expression claire. Du moins est-elle 
intelligible sans qu'on ait besoin de torturer 1'ordre ni le 
sens des mots. Peut-etre arriverait-on a 1'interpreter plus 
surement si un assyriologue voulait reprendre attentivement 
1'examen de la version akkadienne qui est fortement abregee 
et en partie mutilee. Je doute que, tel qu'il est, le texte 
perse autorise une explication tres differente. 

Le reste de 1'inscription se comprend sans difficulte et 
n'appelle que des remarques incidentes qui seront donnees 
en note. Seule 1'interpellation finale merite qu'on s'y arrete. 
Comme dans ['inscription de Bisutun, Darius s'adresse directe- 
ment a celui qui lira sa proclamation. Mais au lieu de martiyd 
" o homme ! ", il emploie le vocatif marika (= akkad. 
LU gal-la "menial, Minderwertiger ") que je rends "o sujet ! ". 
Ce doit etre une variante de martiya- au sens de " homme du 

1 Tel est le sens de maniya- dans plusieurs exemples : yadiy maniyahaiy 
" si tu penses (que le peuple doit etre protege), si tu arretes . . . (Dar. Pers. 
e 20) ; tya amaniyaiy kunavanaiy " ce que j'ai pense : je veux le realiser ", 
en d'autres termes " ce que j'ai decide de faire " (Dar. Suse 1 3). 


commun, homme quelconque ", mais le sens propre est 
" serviteur, esclave ", car gal-la est Fequivalent de bandaka 
a Bisutun. La forme marika serait etrange en face de maryaka 
bien atteste en indo-iranien et confirme par phi. merak. 
Mais marika-, au lieu de mariyaka attendu, peut n'etre qu'une 
graphic defective, pareille a abiydvayam pour abiyajdvayam, 
nisddayam pour niyasddayam, nistdya pour niyastdya. 1 Au 
point de vue du sens, sans reprendre ici dans son ensemble 
un probleme qui a ete debattu ces temps derniers, bornons- 
nous a observer que Facception de " serviteur " se tire aise- 
ment du sens de " jeune homme " que montrent les premiers 
emplois de marya. Entre de nombreux paralleles, il suffit 
de penser a fr. gargon. 

Nous donnons maintenant le texte entier, accompagne de 
la traduction que les observations precedentes et les notes qui 
suivent paraissent autoriser. 

baga vazraka a(h)uramazdd hya adadd i- 

mafrasam tya vainatai[y\ hya adadd si- 

ydtim martiyahya hya xraOum ut- 

d aruvastam upariy ddrayava(h)um xsd- 
5 yaQiyam niyasaya Qdtiy ddrayava(h)us xsdya- 

Qiya vasnd a(h)uramazddhd avdkaram a(h)- 

miy tya rdstam dau\sf\d a(h)miy miQa na- 

[i]y daustd a(h)miy na[imd] kdma tya skauQ- 

is tunuvatahyd rddiy miQa kariyais 
10 naimd ava kdma tya t[u]nuvd skauQais r- 

ddiy miQa kariyais tya rdstam ava mdm 

kdma martiyam drau'janam naiy daust[d] a(h)m- 

iy naiy mana(h)uvis a(h)m\iy ty]dmaiy [.]rtana- 

yd bavatiy darsam ddraydmiy manahd 
15 (h)uvaipasiyahyd darsa\m\ xsayamna a(h)[m\iy 

martiya hya ha(n)taxsataiy anudim [ha](n)krta- 

hyd avaQddim paribardmiy hya \v\- 

1 II est curieux que ces formes a I < -iya se rencontrent jusqu'ici exclusive- 
ment chez Xerxes. La forme marika,, telle que je 1'interprete, semble corro- 
borer 1'avis de Schaeder, pour qui ce " testament " de Darius serait en 
realite 1'oeuvre de Xerxes. 


indOayatiy anudim vinastah[yd avd\Q- 

d prsdmiy naimd kdma tya martiya 
20 vindQayais naipatimd ava kdma yadi- 

y vinddayais naiy fraQiyais martiya 

tya patiy martiyam Qdtiy ava mam 

naiy vrnavataiy ydtd (Ti)uradandm ha(n)du- 

gdm dxsnautiy martiya tya kunau- 
25 tiy yadivd dbaratiy anuv tauman- 

isaiy xsnuta a(h)miy utd mam vas- 

aiy kdma utd (h)u[xsna]us a(h)miy avdkaram- 

camaiy usiy u[f\dframdnd yaddmai- 

y tya krtam vaindhy yadivd dxsnav- 
30 dhy utd viQiyd utd spdQma- 

idayd aitamaiy aruvastam 

upariy manasc[d usi]cd ima patimai- 

y aruvastam tyamaiy tanus tdvaya- 

t[i]y hamaranakara a(h)\m\iy (h)ushamaranakara hakara- 
35 mciy usiy a gd[6a]vd vaindtaiy yaciy 

vaindmiy hamissiyam yaciy naiy vaind- 

miy utd usibiyd utdframdndyd 

adakaiy fratara maniyaiy aruvdyd (?) ya- 

diy vaindmiy hamissiyam yadd yadiy 
40 naiy vaindmiy ydumainis a(h)miy u- 

td dastaibiyd uta pddaibiyd asabd- 

y Jr t7 

ra (h)uvdsabdra a(h)miy danuvaniya (h)uda- 

nuvaniya a(h)miy utd pastis utd 

asabdra arst[i]ka a(Ti)miy (Ji)uvdrstika 
45 utd pastis utd asabdra utd (h)uvnard 

tyd a(h)uramazdd [upa~\r\iy md}m niyasaya utd- 

dis atdvayam brtanaiy vasnd a(h)uramazdah- 

d tyamaiy krtam imaibis (li)uv\naraibi\s aku- 

navam tyd mam a(h)uramazdd upariy niyasaya 
50 marlkd darsam azdd kusuva \ciy\dkaram 

a(h)m\i~]y ciydkaramcamaiy (h)uv[nard c\iydkara- 

mcamaiy pariyanam mdtaiy \durux\tam 

dadaya tyataiy gausdyd [dxsnutam] avas- 

ciy dxsnudiy tya prta[ ~\ti 


55 y marikd mdtaiy avas[ciy ]us 

kunavdtaiy tya [mand Jcrtam as\tiy 

avasciy duLiy yaciy [ ] md 

\ta~\iy ma [ ] dtiy 

a aya[uma]inis bavdtiy [ xsdyd\0iya 

60 md raxOatuv [ ] is 

Le grand dieu est Ahuramazda, qui a cree ces merveilles 
que 1'on voit, qui a cree le bonheur pour I'homme, qui a 
repandu la sagesse et 1'adresse (corporelle) sur Darius roi. 

Ainsi proclame Darius roi : " Par la volonte d' Ahuramazda 
je suis ainsi (fait) que je suis ami du juste, que je ne suis pas 
ami de 1'injuste. II ne me plait pas que le faible souffre tort 
a cause du puissant ; il ne me plait pas que le puissant souffre 
tort a cause du faible. Ce qui est juste, voila ce qui me plait. 
De rhomme menteur je ne suis pas ami. 

Je ne suis pas emporte. Ce qui me met en colere (?),* je le 
contiens fortement par ma volonte. De moi-meme 2 je suis 
fortement maitre. 

L'homme qui s'emploie pour aider, je le recompense selon 
son merite. 3 Celui qui nuit, je le chatie selon sa nuisance. 
II ne me plait pas qu'un homme nuise. II ne me plait pas non 
plus que, s'il nuit, il soit pas chatie. 

L'homme qui parle contre un homme, je n'y ajoute pas foi 
jusqu'a ce qu'il entende la sentence equitable (?). 4 

Ce qu'un homme fait ou fournit selon sa force, cela me 
contente, me plait beaucoup et me satisfait. 

Et telles sont mon intelligence et ma sagesse. 

Quand tu vois ou entends ce que j'ai fait dans le pays et 
en campagne, cela est (preuve de) mon adresse (corporelle), 
en plus de mon esprit et de mon intelligence. 

1 D'apres 1'akkadien. La restitution de la forme perse .rtanayd est 

2 Contrairement a Herzfeld et a Kent, je rattache manaM, qui est un 
instrumental, non un genitif, a ce qui precede, non a ce qui suit. Si manaha 
dependait de xsayamna, on aurait dans (Ji)uvaipasiyahya une redondance 

3 Le contexte impose ce sens quelle que soit la lecture adoptee, hukrta 
ou hukrpa. De toutes manieres il y a un redoublement fautif de r. 

4 Sur cette interpretation, cf. plus loin p. 49. 


Voici aussi 1'adresse dont mon corps dispose. 1 Comme 
combattant, je suis bon combattant. Et une fois qu'il apparait 
sur place, par 1'intelligence, ce que je considere comme ennemi 
et comme non ennemi, tant par 1'intelligence que par la 
sagesse, alors, etant superieur, c'est grace a mon adresse (?) 
que je decide si je considere 1'ennemi comme non ennemi. 2 

Je suis exerce (?) des mains et des pieds. Comme cavalier, 
je suis bon cavalier. Comme archer, je suis bon archer, a 
pied comme a cheval. Comme lancier, je suis bon lancier, 
a pied comme a cheval. Et les capacites qu'Ahuramazda 
a repandues sur moi et que j'ai eu la force de porter, 3 par la 
volonte d'Ahuramazda, ce que j'ai accompli, c'est par ces 
capacites qu'Ahuramazda a repandues sur moi que je Pai 

sujet ! fais fortement connaitre quel je suis et quelles mes 
capacites et quelle ma superiorite ! 4 Que cela ne te semble 
pas [mensonger] 5 ce que tu entends de tes oreilles. Entends 
ce qui t'est [enjoint ?]. 

sujet ! que cela , il fait 

Et vois ce qui Ne 


L'inscription b de Naqs i Rustam nous donne, du verbe 
" entendre ", des formes qui, dument interpreters, eclairent 
1'origine si controversee de pers. snudan. C'est un vieux debat 
qui se ranime. On avait suppose depuis longtemps que phi. 
et pers. snu- remontaient a un v.p. *xsnav- confirme par av. 

1 Je relie tyamaiy a ce qui precede, contrairement a Herzfeld et a Kent. 
Meme interpretation chez Schaeder, I.e. Noter en outre que la phrase 
ainsi entendue forme deux octosyllabes reguliers : ima patimaiy 
ar(u)vastam \ tyamaiy tanus tdvayatiy. 

2 Traduction justifiee ci-dessus p. 47. 

3 Pour la construction, cf. 1. 33. Brtanaiy (" ausbilden " Herzfeld ; 
" to use " Kent) me parait garder le sens ordinaire du verbe. 

4 pariyanam est un derive en -ana- de Fad verbe pariy ; pour la formation, 
cf. skr. antar-ana-, sam-ana-. Le sens de " superiorite " propre a pariy 
est etabli par phi. peroz " victorieux " < *pari-aujah-. Ceci precise les 
indications de Herzfeld 273 et Kent 173. 

5 A titre de conjecture je lis \durux\tam. La restitution semble combler 
a lacune et se fonde sur B. 58 maty a duruxtam maniya[taiy]. 


xsnav-. Mais le verbe avestique xsnav- signifie seulement 
" satisfaire " et ce sens fait obstacle a un rapprochement qui, 
sans cette difficulte, se fut impose immediatement. On 
a done imagine d'expliquer snu- par un croisement de xsnav- 
" satisfaire " et de srunav- " entendre ",* construction 
hypothetique dont Hubschmann denon9ait deja la fragilite. 2 
D'autres ont voulu etablir une filiation directe de snu- a 
srunav- (skr. srnoti), posant phi. usnav- < *abi-srnav-, 3 ce 
qui implique un proces phonetique sans autre exemple. 
A toutes ces restitutions il manquait 1'appui des formes 
perses achemenides. 

Ces formes nous sont maintenant connues et assurent une 
donnee importante : le verbe est bien xsnav-. Mais en meme 
temps apparait une complication imprevue. Des le vieux- 
perse xsnav- possede ensemble les deux sens qui paraissaient 
inconciliables, " entendre " et " satisfaire ". D'une part on 
a dxsnavahy " tu entends " ; imp. dxsnudiy " entends " ; 
de 1'autre dxsnautiy " il satisfait " ; ptcp. xsnuta- " satisfait " ; 
adj. (h)uxsnaus " bien content ". Ce n'est done plus entre le 
vieux-perse et 1'avestique que passerait la frontiere separant 
les deux sens de xsnav- ; il faudrait les admettre concurrem- 
ment en vieux-perse. 

On n'aura chance d'y voir clair qu'en precisant les termes 
du debat. Ceci du moins est acquis qu'il faut exclure tout 
recours a un ancien srunav-.* Nous devons poser exclusivement 
en vieux-perse xsnav-, identique a la forme avestique. Ce 
theme iranien xsnav- s'apparente a xsnd- (skr. jnd-) comme 
stav- (stiind-, staviti, etc.) a std-, comme gav- (skr. 
agre-gav- " qui va en tete ") a gd-, etc. Un rapport reel unit 
les significations : xsnd- " connaitre, reconnaitre " n'est 

1 Bartholomae, Wb. s.v. xsna-, n. 2 ; Nyberg, Hilfsb. II, p. 25, s.v 

2 Hubschmann, Pers. Stud., p. 82. 

3 Ainsi Henning, ZII. IX, p. 202 ; Ghilain, Essai sur la langue parthe, 
1939, p. 85. 

4 A plus forte raison ne peut-on pas faire remonter phonetiquement la 
forme xSnav- a une " infixation nasale " de srav-, comme le veut Herzfeld 
Altpers. Stud., p. 239. 


originairement pas tres eloigne de xsnav- dont le sens premier 
est " reconnaitre comme legitime ou justifie, admettre avec 
faveur ". Ce sens s'observe nettement en avestique dans des 
passages comme ceux-ci ou xsnav- est justement associe a 
srav- " entendre " ; Y. LXVIII 9 surunuyd no yasndm .... 
xsnuyd no yasndm " ecoute notre priere ; admets en grace 
notre priere " (meme formule Yt X 35 avec yasnahe gen.). 
De la aussi le neutre xsnaodra- (phi. snohr, arm. norh) " fait 
d'accueillir avec faveur " et simplernent " faveur " (temoignee 
ou reue). Le sens de xsnav- " admettre favorablement, 
accorder satisfaction " s'est fixe ainsi en " satisfaire " et 
s'est dit indifferemment de celui qui accorde la faveur comme 
de celui qui la re9oit (cf. aussi av. xsnut-, xsnuti-, etc.). Des 
lors tout lien etait rompu entre xsna- et xsnav-, et les deux 
verbes ont evolue independamment. 

Cette interpretation ne tient pas encore compte des formes 
perses qu'il nous faut maintenant considerer pour elles-memes. 
Le texte NR b en fournit les exemples suivants : yada 
vainahiy yadiva dxsnavahy "si tu vois ou tu entends " 
avasciy dxsnudiy tya ..." ecoute ce que . . .". Mais le troisieme 
exemple du present est traduit autrement : yata (h)uradandm 
ha(n)dugdm dxsnautiy '* er gehorcht " (Herzfeld) ; "he satis- 
fies "(Kent). On ne voit pas ce qui justifie cette deviation. II 
faut garder au verbe le meme sens et traduire : " jusqu'a 
ce qu'il entende la sentence equitable " l (quel que soit 1'usage 
ou la regie juridique vise par cette prescription). En revanche 
le participe xsnuta- signifie certainement " satisfait " et le 
compose de restitution probable (h)u[xsna]us doit se traduire 
" bien contente " (cf. av. hu-xsnuti- et pers. xusnud 
" content "). 

Si done on constate en vieux-perse une difference nette 

1 Sens probable de (h)uradand-. De 1'expression (Ji)uradandm ha(n)dugam, 
d'autres traductions ont ete donnees : " dem gute-regel-gebenden testa- 
ment " (Herzfeld) ; " the Ordinance of Good Regulations " (Kent). Tout 
cela restera incertain tant que nous ne saurons pas a quoi Darius fait allusion. 
Le mot ha(n)duga- qui ailleurs signifie " edit, proclamation " me parait 
designer ici la sentence proclamee, ce qui s'accorde bien avec le sens de 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. E 



entre xsnuta- " satisfait " et dxsnav- " entendre ", il est clair 
que cette difference est liee a 1'emploi du preverbe a-. D'apres 
xsnuta-, huxsnaus, le verbe v.p. xsnav- a signifie " accueillir 
favorablement, contenter ", comme en avestique. Ce qui 
appartient en propre au perse est la forme a preverbe a-xsnav-, 
litteralement " accueillir favorablement en soi ", qui a pris 
le sens de " entendre ". A en juger par les faits nouveaux, 
xsnav- et d-xsnav- etaient aussi distincts Fun de 1'autre que 
le sont par exemple, avec une autre image, fr. tendre et 

Desormais fixee, cette difference s'est maintenue en moyen- 
perse ou Ton a d'une part snohr " faveur ", de Fautre asnutan 
" entendre ". Puis les formes verbales de snu- disparaissant, 
le compose a-snu- qui ne s'opposait plus a un verbe simple 
a pu se reduire a snu- "entendre" (pers. sunudan). Cette 
simplification etait peut-etre facilitee par la confusion entre 
le preverbe a- et la pro these a- devant groupe consonantique. 
Dans 1'histoire complexe du verbe " entendre " en iranien 
ou interviennent encore, selon les dialectes, plusieurs autres 
racines (gaus- et srav- notamment), 1 1'emploi de d-xsnav- 
en vieux-perse servira desormais a fixer un critere dialectal. 


Le 13 de Finscription de Bisutun (I 50 sq.) rapporte 
que Gaumata, qui avait usurpe la royaute sous le nom de 
Brdiya, maintenait son autorite par la terreur : kdrasim 

hacd darsam atrsa kdram vasaiy avdfaniyd avaJiyarddiy 

kdram avdfaniyd mdtyamdm xsndsdtiy tya adam naiy brdiya 
a(h)miy " Le peuple le craignait fort. II pouvait tuer beaucoup 
de gens (qui connaissaient auparavant Brdiya). Pour cette 
raison il pouvait tuer des gens " pour qu'il(s) ne reconnaisse(nt) 
pas que je ne suis pas Brdiya " (cf. Gramm. 2 243). 

Mais il y a ici discordance entre le sens attendu et celui 
que Femploi de Foptatif confere a la phrase. L'optatif " il 
pouvait tuer " semble restreindre etrangement Feffet de la 

1 Peu claires sont les formes a -i-, phl.T. 'xsyd-, jud.pers. asnidan, et 
aussi pers. Sanldan. Cf. Henning, ZII. IX, p. 201. 


menace. II ne suffirait pas que Gaumata put tuer ceux qui 
connaissaient son identite veritable ; pour susciter pareille 
soumission et pour reduire au silence ceux qui auraient devoile 
son imposture, il devait tuer effectivement. Et c'est bien 
ce que disent les deux autres versions : " il tuait," non " il 
pouvait tuer ". Weissbach releve brievement cette difference 
(p. 19, n. /), mais il maintient Foptatif comme potentiel, 
faute apparemment de voir quel autre sens lui donner. 

Une solution devient possible des qu'on reconnait a 1'optatif, 
dans le cas present, un emploi qui n'avait pas encore ete 
constate en perse : avdfaniyd est un optatif " de la repetition 
dans le passe ". Cette categoric est bien represented en 
avestique par une serie d'exemples tels que midwm yd avaroit 
( abaroit) vdcim " Mi#ra qui elevait la voix " (cf. Reichelt 
638). C'est a tort que Bartholomae, suivi par Reichelt, 
a voulu expliquer ces formes comme des aoristes athematiques 
de presents en -ay a-. Ce sont bien des optatifs et qui d'ailleurs 
ont abouti a constituer des preterits dans plusieurs dialectes 
de 1'iranien moyen et moderne. 1 

Nous traduirons done : " Le peuple le craignait fort. 
Gaumata tuait beaucoup de gens qui auparavant connaissaient 
Brdiya ; pour cette raison il tuait des gens, pour que . . . etc." 

Cette rectification qui procure un sens satisfaisant en soi 
et precisement celui que postulent les versions paralleles, 
revele en vieux-perse un emploi hautement instructif de 
1'optatif qui semblait limite a 1'avestique et qu'on est desormais 
en droit de reporter a 1'iranien commun. 2 


Rien de plus simple que la traduction de Dar. Pers. e 8 
ima dahydva tyd adam adarsiy hadd and pdrsd Jcdrd " (es sind) 
cliese Lander, die ich in Besitz nahm mit diesem persischen 
Heere " (Weissbach) " voici les pays dont j'ai pris possession 
avec (1'aide de) cette armee perse " (cf. Gramm. 2 p. 213, 368). 

1 Cf. provisoirement Couvreur, BSL. XXXIX, 1938, pp. 247 sqq. Le 
probleme sera a reprendre. 

2 Faits paralleles de date recente en indien : J. Bloch, MSL. 
XXIII, p. 108, et Renou, Gramm. skr., 292, p. 412. 


Suit une enumeration des vingt-trois pays dix a 1'ouest, 
treize a Test qui composent 1'empire. Mais a la reflexion, 
on s'etonne que Darius, centre son usage, ne mentionne pas 
la Perse en tete des provinces ; et aussi qu'il signale 1'aide 
de " cette armee perse " seule, alors qu'il parle ailleurs de 
" 1'armee perse et mede " (B. II 18 ; III 30). 

C'est que la traduction des mots hadd and pdrsd kdrd 
doit etre corrigee en fonction du sens constant de hadd 
" avec ". Cette preposition n'a jamais, en vieux-perse ni en 
avestique, le sens d'instrument (" au moyen de "), mais 
tou jours et seulement le sens sociatif ("en meme temps que ") 
qui est susceptible de devenir adversatif a Foccasion (" com- 
battre avec = contre "). Un exemple suffira : dddrsis hadd 
kdrd asiyava hamaranam akunaus hadd mdrgavaibis " Dadrsis 
marcha avec Farmee ; il livra bataille avec les Margiens " 
(B. Ill 15). On peut s'assurer par les listes d'exemples chez 
Bartholomae que av. ha$a n'a aussi qu'un emploi sociatif. 

On est done amene, en restituant a hadd sa fonction et a 
kdra son sens general de " peuple ", a entendre : " Voici les 
pays que j'ai pris en possession avec (= en meme temps que) 
ce peuple perse." Le sens est alors tout autre. Ce " peuple 
perse ", c'est simplement le premier des pays dont la liste 
se poursuit par " FElam, la Medie " etc. Si cette enumeration, 
contrairement a Fusage, ne s'ouvre pas par le nom de la 
Perse, c'est que le pays vient d'etre mentionne a part sous 
les especes de son peuple. 

La grammaire seule imposerait deja ce sens. S'il en fallait 
une confirmation, on la trouverait dans une autre expression 
de la meme idee qui se lit Dar. NKa 17 et Pers. e 16-17. Les 
deux formules peuvent se superposer 
Pers. e imd dahydva tyd adam adarsiy hadd and pdrsd kdrd 
NRa 17 imd dahydva tyd adam agrbdyam apataram haca pdrsd 
Dans le premier cas, Darius dit : " Voici les pays que Fai 
pris en possession en meme temps que la Perse." Dans le 
second : " Voici les pays que j'ai pris outre la Perse." Et 
pareillement la liste des provinces se deroule, a partir de 
Medie, Elam, etc. La preuve est faite que hadd " avec, 


en plus de " equivaut a apataram " en dehors de, 
outre ". 

Darius n'emploie pas sans raison kdra pdrsa au lieu du 
nom de pays pdrsa. L'expression anticipe sur les prescriptions 
finales du meme texte ou sont traces au roi ses devoirs a 
1'egard du " peuple perse " : imam pdrsam kdram pddiy 

yadiy kdra pdrsa pdta ahatiy " protege ce peuple perse ! 

Si le peuple perse est protege . . .". L'expression a meme 
sens d'un bout a 1'autre du texte, ou regne une constante 


Le nom perse de 1'" ceil " est donne sous la forme ucasma 
(B. II 75, 89) avec un u- initial qui n'a pas cesse de tourmenter 
les etymologistes. Apres Weissbach, Meillet 1'a interprete 
par (h)u-, 1'" ceil " etant designe comme le " bon ceil " (MSL. 
XIX, p. 348) et cette explication, faute de mieux, a ete 
maintenue dans la Gramm. 2 , pp. 162, 168, 179. Elle n'a pas 
satisfait J. Wackernagel (KZ. LXI, p. 205) qui a voulu hardi- 
ment voir dans u- le preverbe, separe par tmese, de avajam ; 
de quoi, a son tour, il n'a convaincu personne. 

Nous n'irons pas forger une nouvelle explication pour une 
forme qui, il faut le dire, est proprement inexplicable. Mais 
sommes-nous astreints a rendre compte de cet enigmatique u- ? 
Est-ce une realite indiscutable ? Au vrai la premiere lettre u- 
est une restitution de Weissbach (ZDMG. LXI, p. 726) 
qui s'est peu a peu imposee comme une donnee de fait. 
Weissbach lui-meme a marque discretement son intervention 
dans la lecture en 1'imprimant " wcasma " avec un u- signale 
comme incertain. Que porte la pierre ? King et Thompson, 
qui ont revise soigneusement sur place le texte entier, donnent 
[ucsa]m (B. II 75) et [u]csam (B. II 89). Dans aucun des 
deux endroits ils n'ont constate de u- initial, et s'ils 1'ont 
introduit en restitution, c'est en vue d'un rapprochement 
eVidemment errone avec skr. aksa- (p. 36, n. 5). 

II y a un temoignage bien plus explicite, celui de 1'iraniste 
A. V. W. Jackson, qui, lui aussi, avait examine la pierre a cet 


endroit. II s'est prononce a ce sujet dans une note qui, melee 
a d'autres tres diverses (IF. XXV, 1909, p. 182), n'a pas 
retenu 1'attention, et c'est grand dommage. Reproduisons- 
en la partie essentielle : 

" . . . The more I consider the subject and the more I examine 
my own notes made when I was up on the rock, the more 
convinced I am that there is a mistake about there being 
sufficient space for a letter u before the three almost illegible 
characters ?sw, and I feel sure that the supposed u is but 
a part of the word-divider, and that we should revert for 
csm (c a s a m a ) to the familiar reading casma already assumed 
by Spiegel, Die altpersischen Keilinschriften 2 , p. 21 n., 218. . . . 
On the whole, therefore, I believe we are fully entitled to 
accept for Old Persian the occurrence of the noun casman- 
' eye ', matching av. casman-, phi. casm, Mod. Pers. casm. . . ." 

L 'observation de Jackson a eu ce sort malheureux de 
tomber dans 1'obscurite au moment meme ou Weissbach 
achevait son edition des textes achemenides. x Sans ce hasard, 
la forme correcte se fut aussitot imposee. Nous devons lire 
simplement casma, sans aucun prefixe. Le nom de 1'" ceil " 
a en vieux-perse la forme qu'il a toujours eue et qu'il garde 
encore dans 1'iranien entier, de 1'av. casman au pers. casm. 
II importe done, en denonant expressement cette pseudo- 
forme, de purger 1'epigraphie et 1'etymologie perses d'un 
pseudo-probleme, et de couper court par avance a toute 
nouvelle tentative d'explication. 2 


Apres avoir enumere les mesures qu'il a prises pour restaurer 
tout ce que Gaumata avait detruit ou detourne, Darius 
conclut : adam hamataxsaiy . . . yadd gaumdta hya magus 

1 Weissbach n'en fait mention que dans les Addenda de son edition 
(p. 159) et par ces simples mots : " Jackson IF 25, 182 f. glaubt jetzt, dass 
im Original einfach casma steht." Cette mention meme a passe inapercue. 

2 Je crois cet avertissement d'autant plus necessaire que, en 1942 encore, 
W. Hinz, Altpersischer Wortschatz, p. 136, se contente d'enregistrer 
\_(h)u\casma en ajoutant " Erganzung Weissbachs ", sans mentionner 
aucune des explications proposees et sans connaitre la note de Jackson. 


vi6am tyam a(h)mdxam naiy parabara (B. I 70). En 1911 
Weissbach traduisait conune faisait dej^ Bartholomae 
(Wb. 1245) : " Ich gab mir Miine, bis (es %irde, als ob) 
Gaumata der Magier unser Haus nicht weggebracht hatte." 
En 1938, E. Herzfeld entend de meme : " Ich arbeitete bis 
(es so war) als ob . . ." (Altpers. Inschr., p. 323). Ne laissons 
pas plus longtemps s'accrediter cette traduction, et juste- 
ment parce que 1'inexactitude ne s'en voit pas au premier 

Cette interpretation n'arrive a rejoindre le texte que par 
un detour : il faut suppleer un "als ob " qui annule, en le 
projetant dans l'imaginaire, un fait pose cependant comme 
reel par le mode du verbe (parabara). Weissbach a ete con- 
traint a cet expedient pour rendre admissible une phrase 
dont la teneur litterale eut ete : " je me suis efTorce jusqu'a 
ce que Gaumata n'eut pas enleve notre maison." Mais une 
pareille phrase serait aussi peu recevable en perse que dans 
nos langues, et la syntaxe achemenide n'use pas d'artifices 
pareils. 1 

Pour retrouver le sens vrai, qui est simple, il faut observer 
que Weissbach a confondu ici yaOa avec la conjonction ydtd. 
Entraine par la phrase precedente adam Tiamataxsaiy ydtd .... 

avdstdyam " je me suis employe jusqu'a ce j'aie eu retabli ", 

il a traduit, dans la presente phrase, yadd qui signifie " ainsi, 
de telle maniere " comme s'il y avait ydtd " jusqu'a ". Le 
sens est alors facile *a retablir, et la phrase se traduira : " Je 
me suis employe de telle sorte que Gaumata le mage ne 
deposseda pas notre maison." C'est bien ce que disent aussi 
les deux autres versions ; elam. " I laboured ... so that our 
house was not removed by reason of Gaumata, the Magian " ; 
akkad. " [I . . .] so that this Gaumata, the Magian, did not 
wrest away our house " (King-Thompson, pp. 105, 169). 
Tout est ainsi en ordre. L'afnrmation de Darius pose la con- 

1 Inexacte aussi est la trad. Tolman : "I labored . . . that Gaumata 
the Magian might not take away our royal house," qui fait de parabara un 
conditionnel d'eventualite. Le sens correct a deja ete indique Gramm.* 
413, p. 249. 


elusion que tout le developpement preparait. Au terme des 
efforts qu'il a employes a restaurer 1'ordre ancien, Darius 
peut proclamer comme un fait acquis : " Gaumata ria pas 
depossede* notre maison." 

II faut done prendre yadd, toujours et partout, dans le 
sens exclusif de " comme ; de maniere que . . .". Cette regie 
vaut pour 1'iranien entier. Bartholomae avait bien forge 
un emploi de yadd " renvoyant au passe et contredisant la 
realite " (Wb. 1245). Mais il n'a pu le fonder que sur un 
exemple unique, celui precisement qui vient d'etre examine. 
En avestique non plus qu'en vieux-perse, yadd n'a jamais 
pour fonction d'enoncer une condition irreelle. Nous ne 
suivrons done pas M. Herzfeld quand il essaie a son tour 
(op. cit. p. 362) de justifier " als ob ". Outre le present passage, 
il allegue deux exemples, 1'un et 1'autre a tort : adam akunavam 
yadd aniya aniyam naiy fatiy (Dar. Suse e 15) signifie simple- 
ment : " j'ai agi de maniere que 1'un ne frappe pas 1'autre." 
Sur le second fait, il faut prevenir toute equivoque : yadiy 
vaindmiy hamissiyam yadd yadiy naiy vaindmiy signifie en 
effet "si je vois un ennemi comme si je ne le vois pas " 
(NR b 38) ; mais c'est yadd yadiy qui veut dire " comme si " 
(yadd " comme " -j- yadiy " si "), non yadd seul. Par ailleurs, 
contrairement a I'anirmation du meme auteur, il n'existe 
aucun passage des Gathas ou yadd doive s'entendre " velut 
si, als ob " : on s'en convaincra facilement en parcourant les 
listes d'exemples de Bartholomae (col. 12'40 sq.) qu'il n'est ni 
possible ni utile de reproduire ici. 


L'adjectif aniya- " autre " a en vieux-perse tous les emplois 
que son sens lui confere normalement, avec des fonctions 
enumerative, reciproque, etc. qui n'appellent aucun commen- 
taire. Mais on admet que, dans deux passages, le mot " autre " 
signifie " ennemi ", et c'est par " ennemi " que toutes les 
traductions le rendent : Dar. Pers. e 9 haca aniyand md trsam 
" je ne veux craindre aucun ennemi ; vor keinem Feinde 
will ich mich fiirchten " (Weissbach) ; Dar. Pers. d 11 iyam 


dahydus pdrsa .... hacd aniyand naiy trsatiy " ce pays de 
Perse ne craint aucun ennemi ; f iirchtet sich vor keinem 
Feinde ". 1 Ces deux inscriptions de Persepolis ne sont 
connues qu'en redaction perse. II n'y a done pas de secours 
a attendee d'autres versions pour la solution de la difficulte 
que nous soulevons ici. 

Car c'est une difficulte. Nulle part ailleurs en iranien 
ancien ou moderne, non plus qu'en indien, an(i)ya- n'est pris 
au sens d'" ennemi ". On concevrait a la rigueur pareille 
acception si le redacteur s'etait cru tenu a la litote. Mais 
Darius ne s'exprime pas a demi-mot, et le contraste est 
singulier de cette fiere proclamation, qui a le ton d'une 
bravade, avec une designation attenuee. 

Les deux exemples sont curieusement pareils. Us associent 
aniya- au verbe trsa- " trembler, avoir peur ". Que signifie 
1'expression hacd . . . trsa- ? La question n'est pas si oiseuse 
qu'elle semblerait. Que veut dire Darius quand il affirme 
qu'un homme ou un peuple " a eu peur " de lui ? De quoi 
cette peur est-elle le signe ? Kevoyons tous les exemples de 
1'expression dans leur contexte entier. Le peuple avait grand 
peur de Gaumata (kdrasim hacd drsam atrsa B. I 50) et restait 
soumis a son pouvoir. Au moment ou Martiya essayait 
de soulever FElam, Darius etait a proximite 2 de ce pays. 
" Alors les Elamites eurent peur de moi (hacdma atrsa B. II 12) ; 
ils se saisirent de Martiya et le mirent a mort." - " Voici 
les pays qui ont eu peur de moi (tyd hacdma atrsa) et qui 
m'ont paye tribut " (Dar. Pers. e 9). Les peuples qui se 
battaient sont maintenant en paix. " Ils ont peur de ma loi " 
(hacd avand trsantiy Dar. Suse e 38). 

Nous n'avons jamais une expression telle que : " il a eu 
peur de moi et il s'est enfui." La consequence de cette " peur " 
est toujours la soumission et Vobeissance. Le sens de 1'expression 
apparait alors : hacdma atrsa " il a eu peur de moi " equivaut 
en fait a " il a reconnu mon autorite et s'y est soumis ". 

1 Ainsi aussi Tolman (" enemy "), Herzfeld, Altpers. Inschr. p. 73 et 
Hinz, Altpers. Wortschatz, 1942, p. 52 Feind ". 

* Tel est certainement le sens d'asnaiy (Herzfeld, p. 98). 


Cette crainte marque, de la maniere qui sied au peuple et 
a 1'epoque, la reverence qu'on doit au pouvoir legitime. 

Revenons maintenant aux deux exemples litigieux de aniya- 
puisqu'ils mettent en jeu la meme locution, et d'abord a 
Pers. e : " Ce pays de Perse qu'Ahuramazda m'a accorde, . . . 
par la volonte d'Ahuramazda et (celle) de moi le roi Darius, 
il ne craint aucun autre" Non pas " il ne redoute aucun 
ennemi ", mais " il ne reconnait 1'autorite de personne autre 
(qu'Ahuramazda et moi-meme) ". Comme dans les exemples 
precedents, la " crainte " n'est pas la peur physique d'un 
danger, mais le sentiment de soumission a 1'egard de 1'autorite. 
En consequence, aniya- signifie simplement, comme partout, 

Plus instructif encore est le dernier exemple. L'inscription 
Pers. e fait partie d'une serie de quatre textes (d, e, f, g) 
graves sur le mur sud de la terrasse de Persepolis. Darius 
s'adresse, sans le designer, au souverain qui habitera le palais 
et lui present ses devoirs envers le peuple perse, dans une 
phrase que nous donnons maintenant en traduction rectifiee : 
" Si tu penses ' Que je ne craigne aucun autre ! ', defends ce 
peuple perse." Chacune de ces deux propositions est de sens 
pregnant. "Que je ne craigne aucun autre (haca aniyand 
md trsam) " signifie " Qu'aucun autre ne m'impose son 
autorite ". Pour realiser ce souhait, c'est-a-dire pour n'avoir 
pas a reconnaitre un pouvoir etranger sur un de ses pays, 
en particulier celui d'un rebelle ou d'un usurpateur, le souverain 
doit " garder " le peuple perse (imam Jcdram pdrsam pddiy), 
le garder de 1'esprit de mensonge (drauga), qui detournerait 
de lui la protection d'Ahuramazda et le vouerait a la triple 
calamite : invasion, famine, impiete. La prescription trouve 
son meilleur commentaire dans un passage de 1'inscription 
de Bisutun, ou Darius lance un appel au roi futur, pour 
conclure F expose de ses campagnes victorieuses et en tirer la 
Ie9on ( 55) : "0 toi qui un jour seras roi ! garde-toi fort 
du mensonge (drauga) \ 1'homme qui sera ' menteur ' 
(draufana), chatie-le bien si tu penses : ' Que mon pays soit 
intact ' ! " Ici et la le sens du conseil est le meme. A Bisutun, 


" que mon pays soit intact (duruvd) " ou, a Persepolis, " que 
je ne craigne pas un autre," cela revient a proclamer un 
principe identique : aucun autre pouvoir ne doit se dresser 
en face du mien. II faut done reprimer 1' esprit de mensonge 
(drauga) qui anime la rebellion, pour maintenir 1'" integrite " 
du peuple perse. Ainsi se prepare la conclusion (Pers. e 3) : 
si le peuple perse est garde, le roi verra descendre sur sa maison 
ce bonheur (siydti) qui est la recompense terrestre de la piete 
selon les voies d'Ahuramazda. Car c'est a raison meme de la 
reverence qu'il doit a Ahuramazda que le peuple reconnaitra 
la souverainete exclusive du souverain legitime. Cette affirma- 
tion de legitimite, consacree par la volonte d'Ahuramazda, 
a ete le plus constant souci de Darius. 

Pour revenir a notre point de depart : aucune deviation 
ne doit etre admise quant au sens de aniya- qui signifie seule- 
ment " autre " dans tous ses emplois connus. 1 


II arrive que la version elamite ne traduise pas, mais se 
contente de transcrire des mots ou meme des expressions 
entieres du texte perse. Et 'dans certaines de ces transcriptions 
se conservent des details precieux. 

En voici un qui, quoique releve incidemment par Weissbach 
(p. 61, n./), a echappe a 1'attention. La phrase dahydusmaiy 
duruvd ahatiy " que mon pays soit indemne " (B. 55) se 
trouve transcrite en elamite avec une variante interessante : 
da-a-ya-u-is-mi tar-ma as-du, c'est-a-dire dahydusmaiy duruvd 
astuv. Le subjonctif ahatiy a ete remplace par un imperatif 
astuv non encore atteste en vieux-perse, mais evidemment 
postule par la comparaison et qui s'incorpore desormais au 
paradigme de " etre ". Cette substitution confirme que le 
subjonctif ahatiy a bien valeur modale, et non valeur temporelle 
de futur, comme le pense Weissbach. 

Du meme verbe " etre ", nous avons la lere sg. du subjonctif 

1 Cette discussion indique assez pourquoi je ne puis adherer aux remarques 
de Herzfeld (op. cit. pp. 72 sq.) sur aniya-. L'exemple B. I 95 doit aussi 
s'interpreter par " autre ". Je traduis : " le reste de 1'armee rebelle se 
jeta (ou fut jete) a Teau ; 1'eau 1'emporta." 


transcrite en elamite dans 1'inscription de Xerxes centre les 
daivas ; 1'expression siydta dhaniy " puisse-je etre heureux " 
est simplement reproduite en sa-ta ha-ni. La forme sa-ta 
qui contraste avec la transcription si-ya-ti-is fidelement calquee 
sur la forme ecrite v.p. siydtis (elam. Dar. Elv. et Sz. c), 
indique que, dans la prononciation, siydta se reduisait a sdta 
(cf. av. sdta), ce qui est confirme par les transcriptions grecques 
telles que napv-aans et Uan-paplydvrjs. La graphic tar-ma 
pour duruvd semble attester une prononciation drvd. Quant 
a ha-ni pour ahaniy, on serait tente d'abord de n'y voir qu'une 
apherese de la voyelle initiale, ahaniy reduit a *haniy. L'expli- 
cation a chance d'etre moins simple et, si elle est juste, plus 
instructive. Si Ton remarque que 1'elamite transcrit reguliere- 
ment ha- un a- initial perse (har-ri-ya ariya ; ha-ri-ik-Jca 
= arika ; ha-na-ma-ak-kas = andmaka ; ha-du-kan-na-is 
= adukanis, etc.) il est permis de supposer que ha-ni represente 
une forme perse *dni / y, contraction de ahaniy, de meme que 
le nom de mois tu-ir-ma-ir, qui transcrit v.-p. Buravdhara, 
suppose une forme contracte *6uravdra. De pareilles dis- 
cordances de detail aident a mesurer Fecart entre les formes 
ecrites et la prononciation reelle. 

On connait le contraste dialectal de v.-p. vispazana (forme 
en realite mede) et de la transcription elamite mi-is-sa-da-na 
= visadana (forme perse phonetique). Mais le mot perse 
dana existe hors de ce compose. II se trouve dans la version 
elamite d'un des exemples de la formule xsdyaBiya dahyundm 
paruzandndm " roi des pays aux nombreuses races ". En 
general paruzandndm est transcrit par-ru-za-na-is-be-na avec 
la desinence du gen. plur. elamite (cf. Dar. NRa 2 ; Xerx. 
Van 2). Mais dans Xerx. Pers. c, le texte perse donne le 
compose ecrit en deux mots : paruv zandndm, et cette fois 
1'expression est traduite (sunkuk da-a-hu-is-be-na) ir-se-ik-ki- 
ip-in-na da-na-is-be-na. Le gen. plur. ir-se-ik-ki-ip-in-na 
sert a rendre v.-p. parundm dans (aivam) parundm (xsdyaBiyam) 
" seul roi de nombreux hommes ". En employant 1'expression 
ir-se-ik-ki-ip-in-na da-na-is-be-na, 1'elamite traduit comme si 
le modele avait porte (xsdyaBiya dahyundm) *parundm 


zandndm. Le gen. plur. da-na-is-be-na atteste ainsi 1'existence 
du mot perse dana en emploi independant. 

aha et ahantd 

C'est une particularite curieuse de la flexion du verbe 
" etre " en vieux-perse que la 3e personne du pluriel du 
preterit y possede deux formes, active et moyenne, aha et 
ahantd, valables apparemment dans les memes emplois ; 
coexistence ou Fon a vu la preuve d'un flottement morpho- 
logique et 1'indice d'un etat de langue encore mal fixe 
(Gramm. 2 p. 7). 

Mais les formes aha et ahantd sont-elles reellement equiva- 
lentes et interchangeables ? Cette singularite d'une flexion 
moyenne introduite partiellement dans le verbe substantif 
doit nous engager a un examen attentif des valeurs syntaxiques. 
Nous considererons successivement tous les exemples de 1'une 
et de 1'autre forme. 

Voici d'abord ceux de aha. Us se presentent pour la plupart 
dans la formule de datation X. mdhyd X. raucabis Qakatd 
aha " du mois X. tant de jours etaient passes (B. I 38, 42, 56, 
90, 96 ; II 27, 36, 42, 47, 56, 70, 98 ; III 19, 40, 47, 63, 69, 89). 
En outre : VIII mand tau(h)mdy[d tyai]y [pa]ruvam xsdyaOiyd 
aha " huit de ma lignee auparavant ont ete rois " (B. I 10) ; 
tyaiy paruvd xsdyad[iyd y]dtd aha " les rois anterieurs, aussi 
longtemps qu'ils.ont ete " (B. IV 51) ; ciyakaram [aha a]vd 
dahydva " combien nombreux etaient ces pays " (NRa 39). 

Mettons en regard ceux de ahantd. D'abord la formule 
frequente martiyd tyaisaiy fratamd anusiyd dha(n)td " les 
hommes qui etaient ses principaux partisans" (B. I 58 x ; 
II 77 ; III 49, 51, 75, 90, 92). En outre : ma[n]d ba(n)dakd 
dha(n)td " ils etaient mes serviteurs " (B. I 19) ; imaij 
martiyd tyaiy adakaiy avadd dha(n)td " voici les hommes qui 
etaient la alors " (B. IV 81) ; ddrayava(h)us (faute pour 

1 Cet exemple est le seul & presenter la formule dans un ordre un peu 
different : tyaisaiy fratamd martiya anusiya dha(n)td. On dirait que le 
graveur, ayant oublie martiyd en tete, 1'a rajoute apres/ratoraa. La diflference 
est en tout cas sans portee. 


vahaus) pussd aniyaiciy dha(n)td " Darius avait encore 
d'autres fils " (Xerx. 29), litt. " a Darius etaient encore 
d'autres fils ". 

La confrontation des exemples fait voir qu'il y a une 
difference et ou elle reside. 

La forme aha sert de predicat d'existence, specialement 
dans la formule de datation, et en general quand la simple 
notion d'" etre " est posee. Mais dha(n)td se caracterise par 
Fexpression de 1'" etre-a ", de Yappartenance. II marque la 
possession au sens propre (" Dario filii alii erant ") ou le fait 
d'" etre a quelqu'un " comme partisan (-saiy anusiyd dha(n)td). 
De fait anusiyd a tou jours pour verbe dha(n)td, jamais dha, 
et la forme dha(n)td se lie tou jours a un genitif-datif possessif. 

Un seul exemple semble y faire exception B. IV 81. Mais 
le disaccord n'est qu'apparent. Lisons la phrase dans son 
contexte : imaiy martiyd tyaiy adakaiy avadd [d]ha(n)td ydtd 
adam gaumdtam tyam magum avdfanam hya brdiya aga[ub]ata 
adakai[y] imaiy martiyd hamataxsa(n)td anusiyd mand " voici 
les hommes qui etaient la alors, jusqu'au moment ou j'ai 
tue le mage Gaumata qui se disait Brdiya. Alors ces hommes 
se sont employes comme mes partisans ". Le mot important, 
anusiyd " partisans " apparait done un peu apres dha(n)td, 
et quoi qu'il n'en soit pas ici le predicat, il regit a distance le 
choix de la forme moyenne. Le fait d'" etre la " quand la 
revolte de Gaumata menagait le pouvoir . de Darius etait 
une preuve de fidelite, et 1'expression signifie en fait " ils 
etaient a mes cotes, a ma disposition " ; dha(n)td est ainsi sur 
le plan de hamataxsa(n)td et remplit la meme fonction 
syntaxique et semantique que dans les phrases ou il se 
coordonne a un genitif-datif possessif. x 

1 Ici le moyen se justffie pour hamataxsa(ri)ta comme pour aha(ri)ta. 
Mais dans B. I 19 mana ba(ri)daka aha(n)ta mand baftm abara(n)ta " ils 
etaient mes serviteurs, ils m'apportaient tribut ", la forme abara(n)ta, 
dont le sens n'a rien de moyen, a ete simplement conformee a dha(n)td. 
L'expression reguliere est mana bafom abaran que nous avons Xerx. daiva 17. 
II faut restaurer aussi abaran a la place de abaraha Dar. NRa 19 ; le -h 
final n'est probablement qu'une faute du lapicide pour -n, les deux lettres 
ne se distinguant que par un clou lateral. 


On a done voulu differencier en vieux-perse un " etre " 
d'existence et un " etre-a " d'appartenance, en affectant 
a cette derniere fonction une forme moyenne. C'est une 
innovation bardie que de marquer ainsi Fimplication du sujet 
dans 1'appartenance, et. qui prouve en tout cas la vitalite* 
productive de la voix moyenne. Le fait acquiert un grand 
interet pour la linguistique generale. Cette curieuse parti- 
cularite a-t-elle ete limitee a la personne et au temps ou 
nous la constatons ? II parait impossible d'en decider. 
Observons en outre que les conditions de la grapbie nous 
empecberaient de mesurer 1'extension possible de la flexion 
moyenne dans les desinences primaires : a supposer que 
*astaiy et *ha(n)taiy aient existe, ils ne se distingueraient 
pas dans 1'ecriture de astiy et ha(ri)tiy. 


est partout traduit " combattant hostile, ennemi " dans 
1'unique passage qui fait connaitre ce mot (Dar. NRa 46-47) 
pdrsa martiya duraiy haca pdrsd prtaram patiyafatd " rhomme 
perse loin de la Perse a battu Fennemi " ; " bat den kampf en- 
den Feind gescblagen " (Weissbacb) ; - " bas smitten tbe 
foe " (Kent, Language, 1939, p. 64). Dans la Gramm. 2 , p. 161, 
277, prtaram est donne comme ace. d'un nom d'agent 

Cette traduction et 1'analyse qu'elle suppose doivent 
certainement etre rejetees. 1) Si c'etait un nom d'agent, on 
attendrait un accusatif *prtdram, comme framdtdram, 
fa(n)tdram ; 2) si le mot signifiait " combattant ", il 
faudrait le plier arbitrairement au sens de " combattant 
ennemi " ; 3) le vieux-perse, pour " battre (I'ennemi) " 
dit toujours a]a ; s'il emploie ici patiyajatd, cette forme 
moyenne et munie d'un preverbe doit se justifier par un 
sens different. 

Or les versions elamite et akkadienne donnent ici, non 
" a battu I'ennemi ", mais " a livre bataille " (akk. sal-tarn 
e-pu-us ; elam. be-ti za-la-in-da). Tel est surement aussi le 
sens de 1'expression perse. 


Dans 1'Avesta, la forme moyenne de pati-gan- est prise 
absolument au sens de " combattre, se battre " : yaBd nd 
taxmo radaesta hus.hqm.bdwtat haca saetdt .... paiti.ymta 
" comme un vaillant guerrier combattrait pour une possession 
bien acquise " (Yt XIII 67). De meme v.p. patiyafatd " il 
a combattu " est construit absolument ; prtaram qui 1'accom- 
pagne est un " accusatif de Fob jet interne ". Ce prtara- 
probablement neutre, signifie " combat " et se relie a av. 
prtana- " combat " (ecrit pdsana-) par la meme alternance 
r/n qui unit entre eux les adjectifs av. mi6wara- et midwana-. 

Ainsi comprise, la phrase duraiy hacd pdrsd prtaram 
patiyafatd " loin de la Perse il a mene son combat " devient 
symetrique de la precedente : duraiy arstis pardgmatd " au 
loin est arrivee la lance (de l'homme perse) ". C'est une 
repetition voulue, une reprise du rythme dans un developpe- 
ment de structure poetique : 

yadipat[i]y maniy[dhaiy En outre si tu penses : 

f\ya ciyakaram [aha] avd " quels l etaient ces pays 

tyd ddrayava(h)us xsdyaOiya que possedait le roi Darius ? ", 

patikard dldiy tyaiy gdOum regarde les images qui sup- 

bara(n)tiy portent le trone, 

a[va]dd xsndsdhiy la tu le connaitras. 

adataiy azdd bavd[t]iy Alors tu apprendras 

pdr[sd\h[yd\ martiyahyd que de l'homme perse 

duraiy arst\i\s pardgmatd au loin la lance est parvenue ; 

adataiy azdd bavdtiy. alors tu apprendras 

pdrsa martiya que l'homme perse 

duraiy [hac]d pdrsd loin hors de la Perse 

prtaram patiyafatd a mene son combat. 


Pour dire qu'un homme ou un pays " s'est rebelle ", Darius 
emploie tantot hamissiya abava, tantot udapatatd, deux 
expressions qu'on traduit identiquement. II y a interet a en 
preciser Temploi respectif. 

1 Litt. " de quelle nature ". Cf. ci-dessus NR b 51. 


La revue complete des exemples enseigne que udapatata 
se dit exclusivement d'un homme, non d'un pays, et dans 
Facte d'usurper le pouvoir en se donnant mensongerement 
pour le souverain legitime. Par ce verbe est designee la 
conduite des personnages suivants : Gaumata, faux Brdiya 
(B. I 36, 38) ; Assina, faux roi d'Elam (I 74) ; Nadintabaira, 
faux Nabukudracara (I 78) ; Martiya, faux Umani (II 10) ; 
Fravrti, faux Xsaflrita (II 14) ; Vahyazdata, faux Brdiya 
(III 24) ; Araxa, faux Nabukudracara (III 79). Dans un 
seul cas Cissantaxma, faux roi de Sagartie on emploie 
hamissiya abava (II 79-80). Mais Finverse ne se produit 
jamais ; nous ne trouvons pas udapatatd quand il s'agit 
d'un pays ou d'une armee, mais seulement hamissiya abava, 
qui designe proprement 1'acte de secession (avec haca 

Pour comprendre pleinement le sens general et 1'acception 
restreinte de udapatata, il faut en rapprocher 1'emploi de 
ud-pat- dans 1'Avesta ou il signifie " emerger, surgir d'un 
bond " en parlant des etres daiviques. Tous les exemples le 

montrent bien : Yt XIX 57 dat uspatat franrase 

zrayanhat haca vouru.kasdt " alors Frahrasya [personnage 
malefique] surgit du lac Varukarta " ; Vd XIII 42-43 
uspatdnti definit la naissance d'animaux batards, hybrides 
de chiens et de loups, a ce titre reputes nuisibles ; au causatif 
Yt XIX 44 uspatayeni anrdm mainyum dT9yata haca duzanha 
" je vais faire surgir Ahra Manyu de 1'enfer hideux ". 

Ce sens specifiquement " mauvais " n'apparait qu'en iranien. 
En vedique le verbe a seulement son sens etymologique : 
" s'envoler vers le haut " (oiseaux RV. I 124, 12 ; II 43, 3 ; 
VI 64, 6) ; " surgir d'un bond," comme font le soleil (I 191, 9 
ud apaptat asau suryah), les chevaux du soleil (I 164, 47), 
les rayons du jour (I 92, 2) ou les flambeaux de la lumiere 
(VI, 64, 2). 

En contraste avec le vedique, mais d'accord avec 1'avestique, 
la forme perse signifie done " emerger d'un bond pour une 
oeuvre nefaste, surgir par fraude " et convient a la conduite 
d'usurpateurs qui " emergent " en assumant une fausse 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. F 


personnalite. Ce vocabulaire achemenide, mieux nous le 
comprenons, plus precis et instructif il apparait. 

Note Additionnelle. Depuis que ces notes ont ete redigees 
(a la fin de 1939) je me suis efforce de tenir compte des travaux 
parus et j'ai pu en utiliser quelques uns dans les notes. Mais 
plusieurs articles importants, publics pendant la guerre en 
Angleterre et aux Etats-Unis, ne sont parvenus a ma 
connaissance qu'au milieu de 1'annee 1945, grace a 1'amabilite 
des auteurs H. W. Bailey, W. B. Henning, R. G. Kent, que 
je remercie ici. 

H. W. Bailey (JRAS., 1943, p. 2) a su reconnaitre v.p. 
aruvasta- dans le mot arameen 'rwst qui, dans une inscription 
bilingue greco-arameenne d'Armazi (Georgie), traduit gr. VLKTJ. 
Cet emploi pour " victoire " confirme que aruvasta a le sens 
large qui a ete defini ci-dessus : " habilete a reussir prati- 

R. G. Kent (Journ. of the Near Eastern Studies, iv, 1945, 
pp. 39 sq.) a repris etgrandement ameliore, d'apres des photo- 
graphies de 1'inscription, sa traduction de NR b. Sur un 
certain nombre de points, tels que le lecture aruvaya et en 
general Interpretation des 11. 32-40, son interpretation est 
maintenant voisine de celle qu'on propose ici. Je ne puis, 
faute de place, enumerer les endroits ou nos avis divergent 
et que le lecteur verra sans peine en confrontant nos versions 
(aruvasta, dxsnautiy, etc.). II est precieux d'avoir, dans ce 
meme article, une traduction (par G. Cameron) de plusieurs 
passages de la version akkadienne. 

J'avais 1'intention de joindre a cette etude une note sur 
1'expression si controversee de Xerxes artaca brazmaniya 
que j'interpretais " (rendre culte a Ahuramazda) avec les 
baguettes rituelles " (en expliquant artaca par *artdk- 
< *artahak- = av. asanhak-). J'ai supprime cette note en 
constatant que H. W. Bailey, Zoroastrian Problems, 1943, 
p. 87 n,, avait exprime une idee semblable, et surtout en 
prenant connaissance de 1'important article de W. B. Henning 
(Trans. Phil. Soc. 1944, pp. 108 sq.) qui remet en question le 
tapport entre brazman (= skr. brahman) et av. bardsman 



en vue de comparer v.p. brazman a phl.T. brahm " rite, 
ceremonie ". 



1. Herodote nous fait connaitre le nom des deux filles de 
Cyrus, que Darius epousa 1'une et Fautre : "Arovaa et 
3 ApTvaTwvr) (IV 78 Kvpov .... 8vo 6 vy are pas "Aroaorav re 
Kal 'AprvarwvTjv). Le premier de ces noms, "Arocraa, 
celebre par les Perses d'Eschyle, est depuis longtemps 
interprete : av. hutaosd " KaXXirrwyos ". 

Le nom de la seconde fille, qui n'a pas encore d'explication, 
me parait etre aussi une qualification physique. Je ramene 
*ApTvaTO)vr] a un compose feminin *rdva-fstdm " aux seins 
dresses ", parallele perse aux composes de meme sens av. 
drddva-fsrii (epithete des jeunes filles) et ved. urdhva-stanl. 
La transcription grecque a du simplifier les difficultes de la 
forme originale. Elle y reste neanmoins fidele, moyennant 
quelques adaptations. On serait tente de chercher derriere 
'Aprv un ancien *ardu- comme dans v.p. Ardu-manis ; mais 
ardu- " droit " (av. wdzu-) conviendrait mal au sens, et il 
est vraisemblable a priori que le compose perse a ete constitue, 
en tant qu'epithete traditionnelle, des memes elements qu'en 
avestique et en vedique. La forme du second terme, -arwvTj, 
interpretee par -fstam, montre que fstdna- " sein " qui, en 
composition, se reduit a -fsna- en avestique, gardait en perse 
sa forme pleine, de sorte *rdva-fstdrii est en quelque maniere 
intermediaire entre av. 9Tddva-f$rii et ved. urdhva-stanl. 

2. En face de ved. rjipya-, av. dwzifya- " aigle ", nous 
savons que la forme perse doit se reconstruire en *ardufya- 
d'apres mp.T. dluf (BSOS. IX 79), pers. dluh " aigle ". II 
est aise de reconnaitre cet *ardufya- dans les noms propres 
'Aprvfaos, 'Aprvpios (Herod., Ctes.). 

3. Nous connaissons par Ctesias, Pers. 11 le nom Tipedis 
(d'apres le gen. TifieOeajs) que portait 1'eunuque gardien 
de Cambyse. S'il n'est pas trop hardi de prendre ce nom comme 
une designation de fonction, on comparerait volontiers 


a aram. Eleph. ft'TlDY!* kibl. XTlSfi ^ designe 
un chef de police. Le -pati du second element est encore 
reconnaissable sous la deformation grecque (cf. les nombreux 
noms en -/tares', -/JeST??, etc.). Quant au premier terme 
du compose, la transcription grecque nous apporte au moins 
confirmation de la vocalisation arameenne, a defaut d'une 
explication sur laquelle les avis different grandement (cf. JA. 
1934, II, p. 185 ; contra : Henning, Beichtbuch, p. 90 n.). 

4. On sait que les Grecs ont transcrit par Avro- les noms 
perses en vdta-, dont les titulaires etaient places sous 1'invoca- 
tion du dieu du Vent. Inequivalence est prouvee par 
AvTO(f>paSdTr)$, transcrit en lycien wataprddatehe (Kalinka, 
Tituli Asiae Minoris, n 61), perse *vata-fraddta-. 

De la se tirera sans peine Fexplication du nom Avro/3oi,crdKr)$ 
(Xen. Hell. II, 1, 8) : il represente *Vdta-vaisaka- " serviteur 
de Vata " ; cf. av. vaesa- " serviteur (familier) " et le nom 
*Vaisaka- atteste par av. vaesakay- et par phi. Vesak, pers. 
Vese (Fird.). Ce * Vdta-vaisaka- est un nom comparable a 
*Mi6ra-bandaka- " serviteur de Mi0ra ", arm. Mehrevandak. 
II fournit un nouveau temoignage onomastique du culte 
important de Vata. 


1. ah " peur, ^ojSo?" avec ses derives ahagin, ahawor " ef- 
frayant, terrible ", ahem " j'effraye ", etc., n'est pas encore 
reconnu comme emprunt et manque chez Hubschmann. On peut 
ramener ah (theme en -i-) a av. ddi-. Ce mot d9i- est traduit 
chez Bartholomae " Verderben, Unheil, Leid " probablement 
parce que av. dOa'F.'J se trouve rendu par phi. dart. Mais 
d'autres faits sont plus concluants. La liaison aiQlm Qwyqmca 
Yt X 37 associe ddi- a la notion de " crainte ", de sorte que 
la phrase am dis aem xsayamno diOim baraiti dwyamca se 
traduira " Mi^ra apporte a 1'armee ennemie frayeur et 
crainte ", plutot que " Verderben und Angst ". La formule 
gathique yehyd md didis dvaedd (Y. XXXII, 16 ; XLVIII, 9) 
signifiera aussi bien <c dont le danger me menace ". Du reste 


la version pehlevie de 1'Avesta confirms cette interpretation 
pour 1'adjectif did want qui est rendu par sahmakon 
" effrayant " : Aog. 28 (cf. H. II, 17) vairim yim xrvantdm 
di6ivant9m = phi. var i vixrun i sahmakon. On pourra entendre 
de meme g. aOri- comme " fray cur " ou " danger " (Y. XL VI, 
8 ; " Verderben, Unheil, Leid " Bartholomae ; " Nachteil " 
Lommel GGN. 1934, p. 106). Les autres formes avestiques 
apdOa (Yt XIX, 48), *dda86a (Yt XIX, 12) sont trop douteuses 
pour rien apporter d'utile. II semble bien au total que les 
emplois de d9i-, ddivant- autorisent une traduction " effroi ; 
effrayant " et permettent de trouver ici 1'origine de arm. ah. 

2. Parmi les composes armeniens de xoyr (v.p. -xauda-) 
que cite Hiibschmann (p. 160, n 280), il en est un qui merite 
1'attention : artaxurak " tiare ; couronne (du martyr) " et 
aussi " couverture de la tente (en tant que sommet pointu) ". 
Ce *rta-xauda- pourrait etre le nom original de la " tiare 
droite " (op #17 ridpa) que portaient seuls les rois de Perse 
(Xen. Anab. II, 5, 23 ; Cyr. VIII, 3, 13). 

3. asakert " eleve " et vardapet " maitre " doivent etre de 
nouveau examines et ensemble. Dans la Rev. Et. Arm. IX, 
1929, p. 10, j'ai explique vardapet " StSaoTcaAo? " dont 
1'origine iranienne est manifeste, par un compose mp. *vard-pat 
< *varda-pati " maitre de pratique ", titre religieux ou vard- 
represente la forme perse de varz- " pratiquer ". Cette 
hypothese est maintenant confirmee par Finscription dite de 
la Ka'aba de Zoroastre, decouverte a Naqs-i-Kustam et qui 
doit etre attribute a Sapur I. On y trouve (1. 32) entre autres 
titres de dignitaires de FEglise mazdeenne, celui de vardbaS 
" maitre des pratiques, des observances ". L'origine de 
vardapet est desormais acquise. 

C'est egalement comme ancien terme religieux que nous 
expliquerons le nom de 1'" eleve ", asakert " pad^T-fis ". Ici 
le probleme se pose en termes differents. II ne s'agit pas d'en 
identifier les formes iraniennes, qui sont bien connues (phl.T. 
hasdgird, pers. sdgird " eleve "), mais d'elucider le sens de 
hasd- dans ce compose *hasd-krta-. Bartholomae Z.air.Wb. 
p. 38 1'a rattache a av. haxay- hasi- " compagnon ". Mais il 


est peu vraisemblable que Jiaxay- avec sa flexion complexe 
ait survecu en moyen-iranien. Comme pour vardapet, nous 
chercherons plutot a asakert une origine perse. On partira 
de *hasd-krta- < *hasiyd-krta- (cf. sdta- < siydta-) dont le 
premier element sera hasiya- " vrai ". L'expression serait 
symetrique du compose av. haidyd.vardz- litt. " qui rend 
vrai, authentique " g. haidyd.vdrdzya-, et ce *hasd-krta- 
signifierait proprement " qui est rendu authentique, accompli ", 
en parlant du disciple qui a fait ses preuves. [Cf. Schaeder, 
OLZ. 1940, 379.] 

En effet av. haidyd.vardz- est deja oriente vers ce sens et 
s'emploie avec une valeur technique que Bartholomae n'a 
pas discernee en traduisant " (wahrmachend, sva.) das 
Geforderte leistend, die Pflicht erflillend ". Le mot se trouve 
G. Ill, 7, au terme d'une enumeration qui comprend dans cet 
ordre : zaotar-, havanan, dtdr&vaxs, dsndtar-, raedwiskara-, 
sraosd.vardz- et haidyd.vardz-, toute une hierarchic de pretres 
dont haidyd.vardz- fait clairement partie. Un autre passage 
G. Ill 3 est aussi explicite : haidyd.vardzdm asavandm asahe 
ratum yazamaide apardmca tkaesdm yazamaide " nous rendons 
culte au haidyd.vardz- et au second maitre " (et non " den 
zweiten Teil der Glaubenslehre ", comme traduit bizarre- 
ment Bartholomae 813). L'enchainement meme des deux 
expressions indique leur similitude et que le haidyd.vardz- 
est un " maitre de doctrine " (tkaesa-) et un ratu. 

On voit ainsi se confirmer 1'idee que, dans 1'Iran sassanide, 
la qualification de *hasd-krta- qui survit dans arm. asakert se 
relie aux memes conceptions religieuses d'ou est issu le nom 
du " maitre ", *varda-pati- arm. vardapet. 

4. burwar " encensoir, Bvynarripiov ", est manifestement 
iranien. On serait tente de 1'expliquer par *baudi-bara- 
" porte-parfum ". Mais Hiibschmann, n 116, p. 122, objecte 
avec raison le -r et pense que le second element est tire du 
verbe armenien varel " bruler ". La difnculte disparaitra si 
nous pouvons identifier en iranien meme le prototype. Nous 
ne 1'avons pas encore en parthe ni en m.perse, mais nous le 
connaissons en sogdien : c'est f3w$firn " porte-parfum " 


(VJ. 14), compose avec -bar(a)na- dont le groupe -rn- a donne 
arm. r comme dans p'ar-k' (farnah-) ou zair < zar(a)niya-. 
Ce *baudi-barana- est comparable a av. zaoQrd.barana- 
" recipient a libations ". Le rapport de -barana- a *-barna- 
est celui de av. zaranya (skr. hiranya) a *zarniya(ka), arm. 

5. erasx (theme en -i) " caution, garantie " doit etre pris 
a 1'iranien comme tant d'autres termes juridiques. Bien que 
la forme iranienne fasse encore defaut, nous pouvons faire 
remonter erasx a *raxsi- qui s'apparentera a skr. raksa- 
" protection, garantie ". 

6. bav " satiete " attestait deja indirectement en moyen- 
iranien le mot qui reparait dans sogd. j8'w " satiete " (sens 
rectifie par Henning, Beichtbuch, 546). 

7. bargavac " prospere, glorieux " (bargavacank' " etat 
florissant, prosperite ") se revele emprunte, si Ton compare 
sogd. firywcyk " prosperite " : w'r 't ftrywcyk fiyrt " il 
obtient reussite et prosperite ", TSP. 8, 93 (corriger trad, et 
note ad loc.). 

8. dzndak " dur, mechant, desagreable " doit etre compare 
a pers. dizand qui a le meme sens. Mais la forme armenienne 
suppose *dizind. 

9. Dans hanganak " contribution, cotisation " et aussi 
" symbole " (probablement par imitation de cru/z/?aAAe>), on 
retrouve un *han-gdnak de *ham-kan- " Jeter ensemble ", 
nouvel exemple de cette racine kan- " Jeter " connue par 
v.p. avdkanam, pers. afgandan, etc. 

10. hambav " bruit, nouvelle, reputation " (d'ou hambavel 
" ebruiter, divulguer ") est si clairement iranien d'apparence 
que seul le sens parait faire obstacle a une interpretation par 
ham-bav-. La difficulte serait insurmontable si Ton devait 
s'en tenir a une traduction etymologique de ham-bav- par 
" naitre ensemble ". Mais deja ^v. ham-bav- s'emploie dans 
une acception qui peut aider a comprendre le sens de Femprunt 
armenien. Pour plusieurs exemples, qu'il faut augmenter, 
Bartholomae a pose le sens de " entstehen ", notamment 
dans plusieurs passages du Videvdat ou le verbe s'applique 


a des animaux ou a des maladies qui " naissent et se develop- 
pent " dans certains endroits (Vd. VII, 57 ; XIII, 51 ; 
XVII, 3 ; XIX, 34). Quand il s'agit notamment de demons, 
de maladies ou de creatures malignes (p.ex. xrafstra), on ne 
fausserait pas le sens en traduisant ham-bav- par " se diffuser ". 
II devient possible alors de voir dans arm. hambav " bruit, 
nouvelle " une acception metaphorique de ce sens et de le 
ramener a 1'idee de ce qui se repand, se diffuse, en partant 
peut-etre de locutions pregnantes. 

11. dep-k e " evenement, rencontre ", dep " convenable, 
opportun ", dipan " opportun, favorable ", dipim " se 
rencontrer, avoir lieu ", Jiandipim " coincider " s'expliquent 
par un radical *daip- *dip- que nous trouvons dans phl.T. 
dyb " bonheur, chance " (A.H. II, III), dybg " destin, sort ". 
Deja Andreas (HR. II, p. Ill ; cf. Salemann, Man. Stud., s.v.) 
a indique brievement ce rapprochement, que je reprends 
explicitement pour qu'il serve, s'il y a lieu, a fixer d'autres 
formes. 1 

12. das " rang, ordre ", dasel " ordonner, arranger " pourrait 
fournir la forme propre a expliquer mp.T. hnds- s'il signifie 
" regler, repartir ", comme on le traduisait (cf. Henning, 
Mp. Verbum, p. 173). Mais selon BSOS. IX, p. 83, le sens 
serait " laisser, abandonner ", comme parthe 'nd's-. On en 
jugera mieux quand les textes auront ete produits. Quoi 
qu'il en soit, das doit provenir de 1'iranien et peut rendre 
compte de pers. handasi " mathematiques, geometric ", et 
aussi d'oss. dasun " reunir, entasser " qui etait isole (Miller, 
p. 59). 

13. gah " declivite, precipice " gahavez " precipite ", 
gahavizel " precipiter " avait embarrasse Hiibschmann (p. 125, 
n 126) a cause d'une traduction inexacte du mot iranien 
susceptible d'en etre 1'origine. Aujourd'hui on ne doute pas 
que av. vl-gdd- designe les precipices des montagnes. Mais 

1 Different est phi. dibahr " colere " qui a son tour rappelle curieusenient 
arm. dipah. Mais les sens different : arm. dipah signifie " arrets, maison 
d'arrets " et suppose *dep-. 


Bartholomae s.v. a oublie de mentionner le mot armenien. 
Un rappel n'est pas inutile. 

14. hnazand " obeissant, soumis " (hnazandel " soumettre, 
rendre obeissant") revele un *hu-nazand qui contient 
Fadjectif connu sous sa forme parthe par perse nazand, nizand 
" humble, soumis " (et aussi " abattu, triste ") et en moyen- 
iranien, par sogd. nznt. Ce dernier s'emploie dans 1'expression 
trn nznt (nyznt) hendiad. " doux (et) humble "- 1 

15. hrapoyr-k e " attrait, entrainement, seduction, sollicita- 
tion ", hrapurel " entrainer, seduire " peut etre reconnu 
comme iranien, bien que la forme correspondante nous manque 
encore. Nous expliquerons hrapoyr-k' par *fm-pauda-, d'une 
racine . iranienne *pud- attestee par parthe pod- "marcher, 
courir " (citee BSOS. IX, p. 87, d'apres des textes inedits, 
cf. Ghilain, Langue parthe, p. 65), pers. poyldan " se mouvoir, 
courir ". Le sens de *fm-pud- sera probablement " courir en 
avant (pour entrainer) " et de la " attirer ". Aucune autre 
forme, a notre connaissance, n'aide a en mieux definir le sens. 

16. katak " plaisanterie ", katakel " plaisanter, badiner " 
nous livre en occidental le mot *kdtak qui etait atteste 
seulement par sogd. k't' k " jeu (avec les enfants), plaisanterie ", 
k't-sy'r$, man. q't-sxnd " action de ridiculiser " (cf. Henning, 
Beichtbuch, 716). 

17. koys " cote, region " est emprunte au mot connu par 
parthe kws, p'dgws, phi. pdtkos, mp. p'dgws, p'ygws 
11 region, pays, province " (arm. patgosapan), sogd. kws 
" cote (d'un objet), angle ", ctfir-kws'y " a quatre cotes, 
quadrangulaire ". Ce *kos va avec phi. kust, kustak " cote 
(exterieur), region ", arm. k'ust " region ", s. chr. qwst " partie 
(d'un groupe) " (ST. I). Mais le sens exige qu'on en separe 
un ensemble tres voisin a tous egards, avec lequel on a coutume 
de le confondre (ainsi Nyberg, Hilfsb. II, p. 102). Nous avons 
en sogdien chretien qwsy " cote " mais " cote du corps, flanc " 
(= TrXcvpd, ST. I, 78, 3), metaphoriquement aussi " flancs " 
d'un navire : en n'wy xw'r'nt qws[y ? ?] = etV ra Se^to, 

1 Corriger ainsi les indications donnees sur ce mot dans le commentaire 
et le glossaire de mes Textes sogdiens (1940). 


fJiepTj TOV TrXoiov " (ST. I, 79, 4). II apparait egalement (non 
reconnu par Pediteur) dans les Actes de St. Georges en qwsy' 
" (elle deposa 1'enfant) en Peloignant de son sein, de son cote " 
(1. 228). Ce mot se range avec phi. kust " flanc, ceinture ", 
arm. kust, kstapanak, etc. Quelles que soient les possibilites 
d'un rapprochement etymologique et partiellement les varia- 
tions dialectales (phi. kust et kust), il est preferable d'admettre 
en moyen-iranien deux mots distincts denotant Pun (sogd. kws) 
une localisation spatiale, " cote, region, pays," 1'autre (sogd. 
qws) une partie du corps, " flanc." Des lors phi. hangosltak 
" parallele, symetrique, semblable ", pers. mazd. hamkos 
" synonyme ", signifiera " qui a le meme flanc, qui est place 
cote a cote ". [Cf. B. Geiger, WZKM. 44 (1937), p. 61 sq.] 

18. sug " tristesse, deuil " dont Hiibschmann voulait, 
pour des raisons phonetiques, faire un mot herite (p. 491), 
a toutes chances d'etre emprunte aussi. II faudra poser, non 
*sok, mais sug, vocalisation que permet la forme attestee 
a Turfan (swg). La concordance de arm. sgavor " triste, 
afflige " et de parthe swgb'ryq (A.-H. Ill), pers. sugvdr ne 
peut etre fortuite. 1 

19. Si t'agawor " roi " est d'une interpretation evidente 
(*tdga-bara- " porte-couronne "), il n'en va pas de meme dn 
mot qui lui sert de feminin t'aguhi " reine ", ou la finale peu 
claire -uhi reste sans explication. Cependant ce doit etre 
aussi un compose iranien. Nous le restituerons en *tdga-br6rya, 
devenu *-wrhri > -*wrhi d'ou -urhi, -uhi ; le -w- s'est vocalise 
en -u- devant -r- comme danspatuhas " punition " < *paturhas 
< *patwrhas < pdtfrds. Ainsi fixee dans un mot important 
et caracteristique, la finale -uhi a pris la fonction d'une 
marque du feminin des personnes, dans les noms de metier 
ou les adjectifs d'origine. En armenien moderne on a forme 
hayuhi " Armenienne ", p'arizuhi " Parisienne ", usucc'uhi 
" maitresse ", etc. (cf. Abeghian, Neuarm. Gramm., p. 44). 

20. vep " histoire " (vipel " raconter ") peut s'expliquer 

1 Sur le timbre o/u du mot persan, les rimes ne fournissent que des 
donnees contradictoires (cf. Horn, KZ. XXXV, p. 190, et Np. Schriftspr., 
p. 62). 


comme un emprunt remontant a ir. *vaip-, vip- atteste 
par av. vifra-, ved. vipra-. On traduit av. vifra- par " habile, 
expert " dans 1'unique emploi qui en est connu : paurvo 
yd vifro navdzo " Parva, 1'habile nocher " (Yt V 61). A vrai 
dire, c'est la une interpretation au juge, deduite d'un seul 
exemple et peu concluant, car la figure et le role de ce Parva 
sont incomms autrement. Mais nous sommes mieux renseignes 
sur ved. vipra- et il est frappant que 1'epithete qualifie ordinaire- 
ment des recitants inspires, pretres, chantres, poetes (cf. vip- 
" chant "). Les formes vediques de vip- semblent indiquer 
d'abord une activite spirituelle qui se manifeste en inspiration 
poetique et en hymnes religieux. On peut done supposer que ir. 
*vaipa- a signifie " chant inspire " d'ou serait resulte un sens 
de " enonciation imaginative, fable " et finalement " narration, 
histoire ". II faudrait d'autres formes et des temoignages 
intermediates qui nous manquent pour retracer avec plus 
de surete cette evolution. 

21. vizel " couler, fluer, se repandre ", vizan-k e " flux, 
ecoulement " apportent une donnee notable a un probleme 
qui a ete plusieurs fois agite. Le radical *vez de vizem suppose 
*vaig- " couler a flots ". Nous avons done ici une nouvelle 
forme de *vaig- qui est lie au probleme de VEran-vez, av. 
airyanwn vaefah- (v. BSOS. VI, pp. 265 sqq.). Les formes 
armeniennes attestent le meme sens de " couler, se repandre " 
qui est propre a av. voiyna (= vaig-nd-) " inondation " et 
qui se montre aussi dans la liaison de vaefah- avec des noms 
de fleuves (airyandm vaejo vanhuyd ddityayd). Skr. vega- 
entre autres sens, a celui de " flot, torrent ". 

22. vhuk " devin, sorcier " (vhk-a-harcu " id.", vhkut'iwn 
11 divination, sorcellerie ") doit d'abord etre fixe dans son 
exacte signification. Selon des renseignements que 
MM. Dumezil et Berberian m'ont aimablement fournis, vhuk 
sert en general dans la traduction armenienne de la Bible 
a rendre eyyao-rpt/zu^o? " ventriloque " ou, dans deux 
passages des Hois, fleA^TTJs- " sorcier qui evoque les morts, 
necromant" (IV Keg. XXI, 6 cAAip/ (?) var. deXrjrijv ; 
XXIII, 24 6\7)Tas). Le Dictionnaire de Venise cite en 


outre plusieurs exemples ou vhuk est joint a kaxard, get, 
nsanadet, et y ajoute deux definitions ; Tune est tiree du 
commentaire de Chrysostome a Isaie : " Qu'est-ce que vhuk ? 
Un certain mauvais demon, qui parle (hors) du ventre des 
femmes et s'efforce par des choses nouvelles de rendre 
croyable la folie." La seconde provient d'un repertoire 
de mots du XI V e siecle : " vhuk : celui qui consulte par 
les os d'un mort, ou demon devin." De ces donnees on 
peut conclure que le vhuk etait un sorcier ventriloque, 
qui simulait pour des fins magiques la voix d'un absent 
ou d'un mort. Ce mot vhuk me parait etre un emprunt iranien 
qui se ramene a *vihuk < *viduka-. Aussitot apparait un 
rapprochement avec la racine avestique vaed- et les mots 
viOus-, vlQusa-, vldis-, rapprochement d'ou resulte une 
meilleure comprehension des faits avestiques. Quoique ces 
mots apparaissent dans des 'passages peu nombreux et pour 
la plupart corrompus, ils se rattachent a une meme et constante 
representation. Bartholomae traduit vaed- " gerichtlich 
feststellen ; die Schuld einer Tat gerichtlich feststellen, 
(Jemanden) einer Tat iiberfuhren ". En gros, c'est bien la 
definition ; il s'agit de convaincre le coupable de sa faute. 
Mais par quel moyen ? Le verbe vaed- et les mots qui en 
dependent sont tou jours employes en relation avec des 
pratiques d'ordalie. Un passage significatif le montre : 
Vd IV, 54-55 aetahe syaoOnalie vaeOdnti " ils convainquent 
(le coupable) de cette action " ; le prevenu doit boire 1'eau 
de 1'ordalie, dp9m saokdntavaitim zaranyavaitim vlOusavaitim, 
car cette eau possede apparemment le pouvoir de reveler 
magiquement la faute cachee. C'est ce precede de divination 
dans les pratiques judiciaires que vaed- exprime. Dans un 
autre endroit, vidusavant- enonce 1'efficacite des offrandes : 
Vr. VI, I sastica vantdca rafnanhdca viQusaeibyasca zaoQrabyo 
arsuxSaeibyasca vayzibyo amdsd spdntd vanhus snrais naman 
dzbaya " avec eloge et louange et devouement et des libations 
viOusavant et des formules correctement prononcees, j'invoque 
les bonnes A.S. par leurs beaux noms ". Dans ce contexte, 
vidusaeibyo zaoQmbyo doit provenir de quelque autre passage 


ou certaines libations avaient un pouvoir revelateur. On 
parvient ainsi a mieux comprendre le sens de vidis- Yt X 80 

mi 67 "dm yahmi soire miOro.drujo aipi vlQisi ]ata paurva 

masyakdnho " Miflra par (?) le vlOis duquel gisent en masse, 
abattus, les parjures ". Ce n'est pas " Gericht ", comme 
traduit Bartholomae. Mi0ra emploie un viBis pour decouvrir 
ceux qui manquent a leur parole ; c'est un procede divinatoire. 
Comme tel, il pouvait servir aussi a des fins mauvaises. C'est 
du moins ce qu'on pourrait conclure du mot vidusa- qui 
designe (Vd I, 5) un des fleaux que Ahra Manyu a dechaines 
sur le territoire de Mouru (Marv) ; probablement quelque 
genre de sorcellerie, car dans la meme enumeration de pays, 
on retrouve la sorcellerie parmi les plaies dont le Mauvais 
Esprit a affiige d'autres provinces (ibid. 9, 13-14). 

II ressort de cette analyse que vaed- avec ses formes nominales 
aux finales partiellement incertaines (vlQis, vidus-, vl6usa, 
viOusavant-) designait un procede de detection usite dans 
1'ordalie et devait plus generalement comprendre certaines 
pratiques de magie. L'agent de ces operations devait porter 

un nom tel que *vi6u(ka) formation parallele a yatu(ka) 

qui survit dans arm. vhuk " devin, sorcier ". 

23. jerbakal " prisonnier " merite a un autre point de vue 
d'etre etudie dans la meme serie. C'est un compose purement 
armenien, forme de jerb-a-kal, litt. " pris par la main ", 
avec jerb ancien instrumental de jern " main ". Or cette 
denomination du " prisonnier " en tant que " pris par la 
main " est exactement superposable a celle qui est employee 
en moy en-perse dastgra/3 " prisonnier " (= " pris par la 
main ") ; mot atteste dans le Frahang i Pahlavlk (XVII, 1) 
et aussi dans Finscription de Sapur I (Henning, BSOS. IX, 
p. 834) ; sous la forme dastgir Karnam. (Herzfeld, Altpers. 
Inschr. p. 136), pers. dastgir " prisonnier " (BQ.) ; dastgin 
" captivite " en face de phi. dastgrafiih (GV.). II apparait 
done que arm. jerbakal est un caique de mp. dastgrafi et entre 
dans la categorie de ces emprunts semantiques (Hubschmann 
et Meillet en ont signale plusieurs) qui, autant que les emprunts 
formels, attestent Faction d'une culture etrangere. 


On en decouvrirait d'autres parmi les composes armeniens : 
ainsi barekam " ami ", litt. " qui veut du bien " (*bari-a-kam) 
n'est-il pas caique, a 1'aide d'un demi-emprunt, sur parthe 
Mrgdmdy " ami (< $ir-kdm-ak "qui veut du bien", imite 
lui-meme de sogd. syr-ywz-k " id.") ? 




SKT. atta- m. according to B.R. has the meaning of a tower 
or strong point on a wall serving for defence. In the same 
sense we also have attaka-, attdla-, attdlaka-. From this the 
meaning ' watch-tower ' also develops. 

Compare Te. attadi a fortified place in front of a building, 
and, in a more general sense, Ka. added obstacle, hindrance. 
These words are members of a numerous Dravidian series 
beginning at-, att-, ad-, add- and meaning generally * obstacle, 
obstruction ; athwart, across ; to obstruct, close ' : 

Ta. atai to be obstructed ; to obstruct, block, close, fasten, 
ataippu shutting, stopping, obstruction, ataiccu to shut, close, 
Ma. atayuka to be shut, shut up, enclosed, Ka. ada the state 
of being across, transverse or in the way, obstructing, obstruc- 
tion, impediment, adavu an impediment, anything to obstruct, 
e.g. a stone placed, ade to shut, lock, obstruct, stop the 
passage ; to be enclosed, barred, shut up, adda the state of 
being across, etc., addayisu to move obliquely or obstructingly, 
addi an obstacle, opposition, delay, Tu. ataka, atakdvu obstacle, 
hindrance, adaka id., adepuni to shut, close, adeke obstacle, 
hindrance, adda obstacle, hindrance ; across, athwart, addana 
a shield, addali a pole placed across, addi obstacle, stoppage, 
dtanka hindrance, obstacle (= Ka. dtanka, Te. dtankamu id.), 
Kui ada a screen, an intervening object, ada giva to screen, 
intervene, intercept, Brah. ar obstruction, entanglement, an 
obstacle, obstruction. 

The alternation tt/dd points to the fact that the double 
consonant in Dravidian is the result of an assimilation of an 
original consonant group ; the forms with single -t-, -d- are 
in accordance with the usual Dravidian practice of shortening 
double consonants under certain conditions. 


Other words derived from this source are Skt. addana- 
(Lex.) shield (Kitt. : no. 249 and IA. i, p. 236), and Pkt. 
adda- crosswise, athwart. The latter word is well represented 
in modern Indo- Aryan : Hi. dm, Be. dr across, etc. (see Nep. 
Diet. s.v. arbhange). 

Skt. adhara- lower, in combination with ostha- lip, may form 
a compound adharostha or adharaustha l lower lip, as opposed 
to uttarostha- or uttaraustha upper lip. Further adhara- m. 
is by itself used in the meaning ' lower lip ' and in accordance 
with this sense the compound adharostha- is sometimes used 
in the sense of ' upper and lower lip '. Finally adhara- comes 
to be used in the classical poetry in the sense of ' lip ' in general 
as well as ' under-lip ' specifically. This development of 
meaning is not known in the earlier language, and there is no 
trace of any similar development in the case of uttara- applied 
to the upper lip. The influence of some Dravidian words is 
to be taken into account here : Ta. utatu lip, Ka. odadu, 
odaru id. Of these, Ka. odaru lip, is very similar to the Skt. 
word, especially when it is borne in mind that Drav. short o is 
a sound that does not exist in Skt. and is normally replaced 
in loanwords by short a. This being the case the influence 
of the Dravidian word may be held responsible for the peculiar 
development of meaning in classical Sanskrit by which adhara- 
comes to be used in the sense of ' lip '. 

Kittel (IA. i (1872) p. 236 ; not repeated in his Kanarese 
Diet.) compares Skt. alasa- lazy, tired, faint (SBr., etc.) 
with Ka. alasu to be weary, considering the Skt. word to be 
derived from Dravidian. A survey of the Dravidian words 
related to Ka. alasu makes it quite clear that he is right. 
The following words belong to this numerous group : 

Ta. alacu to be exhausted, to become weary, alacal laziness, 
languor, alu to be weary, fatigued, tired, by overwork or care, 
1 Cf. Panini, vi, 1, 94, Vartt. 5. 


aluppu weariness, exhaustion, alaicu to be lazy, alaical 
laziness, alaiyal languishing, drooping, swooning, Ma. alayuka 
to be wearied, alasal fatigue, aluppu weariness, Ka. ala 
fatigue, weariness, alapu, alavu id., alasu to become weary, 
to be relaxed, tired ; (sb.) weariness, idleness, alasate, alasike 
fatigue, lassitude, Tu. alasu old, worn out, alasalu, alasige 
fatigue, weariness, alepuni to be fatigued, aleyuni to be weary, 
Te. alayu to be tired, fatigued, weary, alayika fatigue, alata, 
alakuva id., Kui atari fatigue, laha languor, laziness, indolence ; 
(adj.) lazy. 

This word-family is native to Dravidian and widespread 
in it. Since it can hardly be doubted that the Sanskrit and 
Dravidian words belong together, and since on the other 
side the Sanskrit word has no Indo-European etymology, it 
is clear that the Skt. word is derived from Dravidian. 

Correspondences in Uralian may be suggested for these 
words, bearing in mind that in South Dravidian initial l- 
is not tolerated and a prothetic vowel develops before it 
(BSOAS. xi (1944), p. 350) : Fi. lahju lazy, laiska trage, faul, 
miissig, Est. laisk, g. laiza faul, trage, LpN. laikke piger, 
ignavus ; cf. SamJu. (Ca.) laek faul. Wilhelm Thomsen 
(BFB 193) derived Fi. laiska, Est. laisk from Lett, laisks, 
but the borrowing could be the other way round. 

Ta. alacu besides meaning ' to be exhausted, weary ', 
means also ' to shake, be agitated '. It seems that there are 
two families of words of somewhat similar appearance, one 
meaning ' to be tired ', and the other meaning ' to shake '. 
The words meaning l to shake ' are as follows : 

Ta. alanku to move, shake, swing, be agitated, alankal 
wreath for the hair, waving ear of corn, alakku to cause to 
move, shake, alacu to shake, be agitated, alantalai disturbance, 
confusion, alamaru to shake, tremble, be confused, agitated, 
to whirl, alavalai confusion of mind, agitation, alukku to 
shake slightly (tr.), alunku to shake slightly (intr.), alai to 
wave, shake, play in the wind ; (tr.) to agitate ; (sb.) wave, 
billow, Ma. ala wave, alannuka to be shaken, alayuka to 
fluctuate, be tossed, alekkuka to beat against, as waves on 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. O 


the shore, alu to shake, Ka. alaku to move about, shake, 
tremble, alacu to shake, alasu to shake or agitate in water, 
alugu to be agitated or unsteady, to move about, shake, 
ale to move about, shake, dangle ; to roam about, wander ; 
(sb.) a wave, billow, Tu. alankuni, alanguni to shake, agitate, 
wave, move, alacuni, alasuni to move, shake, agitate, alejuni, 
alejjuni to be agitated, disturbed, aleyuni alevuni to wander, 
roam, aluguni to move, shake, Te. aldgu to be displeased, 
upset, alacu to tease, harass, aladuru grief, sorrow, alamaru 
to grieve, sorrow, ala wave. 

From considerations of meaning these two groups should 
be kept apart, and where two individual forms coincide they 
should be treated as homophones and separated accordingly. 1 

The second group also seems to have parallels in Finno- 
ugrian. Compare Fi. laikka leicht oder geschwind sich bewegen, 
laikkua schwanken, laine wave, Zyr. laikal schwanken, etc. 
(0. Dormer, Vergl. Wort no. 1072). 

Skt. lahari wave, billow, is probably derived from this 
source, although no exactly corresponding form is to be found 
in the available Dravidian evidence. Another Skt. word for 
' wave ', kallola is to be explained as follows. Besides the 
words quoted above, we also find some with -II- in place of -l- 
which has presumably been introduced for the purpose of 
greater expressiveness : Ta. allal affliction, Ma. alia tumult, 
disturbance, Ka. allari the state of being troubled, disturbed, 
Te. allari tumult, confusion ; quarrel, riot, allaladu, allallddu 
to move, shake, tremble, allddu to shake, move, wave, toss 
about; Ka. allakallola, alldlakallola great agitation, as of 
water, confusion of the mind, tumult, disorder, disturbance, 
Te. allakalldlamu confusion, disorder, turmoil, hubbub. In 
Ka. alldlakallola the latter element kallola is an echo or jingle 
of a type common in popular and expressive speech in many 

1 Ta. alacu 1 to be weary, Ta. alacu 2 to shake and so forth. Kittel does 
this for the Kanarese words. Note that Tamil has also a third word, alacu 3 
meaning ' to wash, rinse '. This is connected with the following set : Ta. 
alampu to wash, rinse, alavu to spill, Ka. alambu, alumbu, alabu, alubu 
to rinse, wash, alasu to agitate in water as cloth for cleansing, Tu. alambuni 
to wash, lumbuni to plunge, wash, rinse. 


Indian languages and otherwise has no independent existence. 
From allolakallola late Sanskrit has extracted the latter half 
and made it into an independent word, kallola- wave. There 
is little doubt that Kanarese in particular out of the Dravidian 
languages is the source of the Sanskrit word. 

Skt. alga-, au m. du, the groin is recorded only from one 
passage, VS. 25, 6 (= MS 3, 15, 6) where the commentators 
Uvata and Mahidhara explain algau as equivalent to vanksanau, 
urusandhi. There are some similar words with related meaning 
in Dravidian : Ta. alkul side, waist, middle, loins ; pudendum 
muliebre, Ma. alkitam pudendum muliebre, Kota (Emeneau, 
Kota Texts i, p. 164) algalv loins. The final -I in Ta. alkul 
is sumxal ; cf. Ta. marunkul side, waist, beside Ta. marunku id. 
Note also Tu. alle the side, groin, hip, which may be connected 


The Indian theorists of the drama enumerate four kinds of 
style or manner (vrtti), namely kaisiki the graceful, sdttvatl 
the grand, bhdrati the verbal, and arabhafi, the violent-style. 
Of these the drabhafi, vrtti is associated with scenes of violence, 
tumult, disorder, confusion, anger, fighting, and so forth. 1 
It has four subdivisions which need not be detailed here. 
Such scenes are the fight between Madhava and Aghoraghanta 
in the Mdlatimddhava, the scene of confusion when the monkey 
escapes in the Ratndvati, and the attack on Vindhyaketu 
in Priyadarsikd, Act I. Bharata describes this vrtti as 
drabhataprdyagund ' having mainly the qualities of an 
drabhata- '. Apart from this passage and lexicons depending 
on it the word drabhata- does not seem to be recorded. Its 
meaning according to Hemacandra 2 is ' active, enterprising ', 

1 Mayendrajalasangramakrodhodbhrantadicethitaih | samyukta vadha- 
bandhadyair uddhatarabhati smrta, Sdhityadarparta vi, 132-3 ; cf. Bhar. 
N.&. 23, 57-8, Dasarupa ii, 94-8, Natyadarpana 108, Ndtakalaksanaratnakosa, 
pp. 57-8, Keith, Sanskrit Drama, pp. 327-8. 

8 Abhidhanacintamani 285 Comm. ; drabhatdbstitsdha analasds tesdm 
iyam arabhatl. 


and this meaning is also given by Abhinavagupta. l On the 
other hand it is explained in the Ndtyadarpana 2 as equivalent 
to uddhata-, that is to say * a violent, turbulent man '. With 
this the Ndtakalaksanaratnakosa is in agreement, since it 
paraphrases Bharata's drabhataprdyagund by samuddhata- 
prdyagund. Of these two meanings given, the second is 
obviously more appropriate, since it corresponds exactly 
with the nature of the drabhafi vrtti as described and illustrated 
from the dramas. The Petersburg Dictionary follows 
Hemachandra in denning drabhata as an enterprising man, 
and derives the word from drabh- ' to undertake (something) '. 
This is not satisfactory since for the reasons already given the 
meaning of drabhata- must have been ' a violent, turbulent 
man ', and not ' an enterprising man '. Formally it is unsatis- 
factory since there is no suffix -ta in Sanskrit which makes 
nouns from verbal stems. Further it is significant that it 
did not occur to Sanskrit authors who looked for an etymology 
for the word, to connect it with drabh-. They sought other 
explanations and clearly were oblivious of a connection 
which the modern lexicographers have taken for granted. 
Their explanations, of course, are no better than the one we 
have already rejected. 

The Dravidian languages provide an obvious etymology 
for this word. This is to be found in the following words : 

Ka. drbata crying aloud, roaring, a loud noise, drbdta id., 
Tu. drbata, drbhata, drbhate a fearful noise, uproar ; a joyful 
cry, triumph, Te. drbhatamu, drbhati cry, roar, uproar, Ta. 
drppdtam uproar, loud cry; boisterous behaviour. These 
words are very similar in form and meaning to the Sanskrit 
word, and its origin is obviously to be sought here. The 
Dravidian words are derived from a common root dr meaning 
to shout which appears as follows : 

Ta. dr to shout, roar, bellow, drppu loud, tumultuous 
noise; exultation; battle, Ma. drkuka to cry aloud, roar, 

1 Commentary on Bhar. N.. (ed. GOS.) i, p. 20 ; iyartiti ara bhatdb 
sdtsaha analasas tesam iyam drabhatL 

2 Loc. cit. ; areya pratodakena tulya bhafa uddhatdfr purusa ardbhatab. 


shout, Ka. dr to cry aloud, drpu, drbu crying aloud, Tu. 
drkuni to cry out, shout, Te. drcu to cry aloud, shout, roar, 
Kui drpa to call. Compare also Mar. dranem to utter its cry, 
to crow the cock, which looks like a loanword from Dravidian. 

Skt. ukhd f. cooking pot, pan is a common word, parti- 
cularly in the Brahmana literature. An isolated instance of 
ukha- m. in the same sense is also quoted. Besides this the 
dictionaries also give ukha- m., ukhd f. in the sense of ' a 
particular part of the upper leg '. This second word has no 
connection with the first in meaning and they must be regarded 
as two homophones. The latter word is of very infrequent 
occurrence, the dictionaries giving only three instances 
Ldty. &r. S. (ukhasya), Caraka-samhitd, drirasth. 7, 11 
(ukhe n.du. in a list of the parts of the body) and Ganapdtha 
on Panini iv, 1.56 (ukhd f.). Commentators on the three 
texts explain the word respectively as follows : (1) katisanni- 
krstajaghanapradese ukhah, (2) ukhe iti kaksasya pdrsvayor 
nimnabhdgau, (3) ukhd = sphik. A portion of the body in 
the region of the hip is indicated by this evidence. To these 
passages we must add RV. iv, 19.9, where ukhacchid l one 
who breaks his ukha ' is used in the sense of a lame person 
(Windisch, Festgruss an Bohtlingk, p. 115). Finally we may 
note ukhe in KS xxxi, 2 (= MS iv, 1.3), which Geldner, in 
the notes to his translation of the above Kgvedic passage, 
quotes and considers to mean a part of the body (tasydkhe 
asramsetdm ' his (Prajapati's) ukhas collapsed '). 

On the etymology of ukhd 1 see Walde-Pokorny i, 24. 
The second word appears to be of Dravidian origin. Compare 
the following words : Ta. ukkam waist, ukkal side, ukkalai 
the hips, okkal hip, side of the body, okkalai id., Ma. ukkam 
middle, hip, side, ukkal id., okku hip, loins, Te. okka the hip, 


Skt. unch- means ' to glean ' ; with pra- (pronch-) ' to rub, 
wipe, wipe out, efface '. The latter word has persisted through- 


out the successive stages of Indo-Aryan: Pa. punchati to 
wipe off, clean, Pkt. pumchai ; for the modem IA derivatives 
see Nep. Diet. s.v. puchnu. Comparing the meanings of Skt. 
unch- and pronch- it is clear that a more general and original 
meaning is preserved in the compound than in the simple 
verb. The latter has developed a secondary and specialized 
meaning ' to glean ' from an originally more general meaning 
' to wipe, scrape ; to wipe up, scrape up '. This verbal root 
can be derived from some Dravidian words meaning ' to 
rub, scrape, etc.' ; Ta. urincu to rub, wear, grind, scrape, 
Ka. ujju to rub, make fine by rubbing, urdu, uddu id. The 
Tamil word corresponds exactly to the Sanskrit word. Since 
the -i- in Ta. urincu is in all probability a svarabhakti vowel, 
an original *urncu is to be presumed. The Sanskrit word is 
derived from a form with -r- assimilated ; such an assimilation 
is found also in Ka. ujju, which in addition has lost the nasal 
element. Ta. urincu < *urncu is to be analysed into a root 
ur -f- a suffix -we-. The root appears in many words : Ta. 
urai to rub, uracu to rub against, Ma. urasuka to rub, urekka 
id., Ka. orasu to rub, scrape, wipe, Tu. uresuni to rub, polish, 
Te. oracu to rub, etc. 

The meaning * to glean ' in the case of Skt. unch- develops 
as a result of its use in connection with sila- m. in phrases 
like sildn apy unchatah (Manu. 3.100) ' of one scraping up 
the gleanings ' (lunakeddrasesadhdnydni silds tdny apy uccin- 
vatah, Kulluka). This word also appears to be of Dravidian 
origin ; compare Ka. cillu smallness, Te. cilia bits, fragments 
(Brown), Tu. cillu a small piece, Ta. Ma. cillu id., Ka. cillara, 
Te. cillara, Ta. cillarai sundries, trifles, odds and ends, small 
change, etc. 

From this combination we get the tatpurusa compounds 
siloncha- and silonchana- f gleaning '. The compound siloncha- 
then came to be misunderstood as a dvandva, so that is 
found sometimes in the masculine dual, and an attempt is 
made to distinguish sila- and uncha- as two different kinds 
of gleaning (Manu x, 112, and Kulluka's commentary). 
Another result of this misunderstanding is that the members 


of the compound are put the other way round in unchasila- 
(Lex.) ' gleaning '. 


Skt. kankd- m. heron is recorded from the VS. onwards. 
Similar words meaning ' heron ; crane ' are common in the 
Dravidian languages, so that it may reasonably be assumed 
that the Sanskrit word is derived from this source : 

Ta. kokku common crane, grus cinerea ; stork, paddy-bird, 
Ma. kokku paddy-bird, heron, kokkan id., Ka. kokku, kokkare 
crane, Tu. korngu crane, stork, Te. konga crane, kokkera id., 
Kuvi kongi crane, Kui kohko paddy-bird, Brah. khdkhur 
demoiselle crane. As there is no short o in Sanskrit, a short a 
is usually substituted in loanwords from Dravidian. The 
Sanskrit word therefore represents a Dravidian stem *konk-. 
The alternation kk (Ta. kokku)/ng (Te. konga) represents 
original alternation nk/ng, the nasal being assimilated in 
the first form. 

As evidenced by Tu. korngu an original -r- has been 
assimilated in most of these forms. This makes it possible 
to bring the following words into the same family: Ta. 
kuruku heron, stork, crane, Ma. kuru heron, kuriyan heron, 
paddy-bird, Go. (Lind) koruku a crane, cranes. Corresponding 
words are to be found in the Uralian languages, as follows : 
LpN. guorgga grus cinerea, Fi. kurki crane, MdM. kargo, 
E: karga id. | Sam. Ju. haro, ham, 0. kara, K. karo id. (Paas. 
Beitr. no. 114, Leht. FUF. xxi, 11). Compare also SamT. 
koka're crane, with Ka. Te. kokkera, Brah. khdkhur. In these 
latter words an r has been assimilated which appears in 
another loanword in Sanskrit : karkardtuka Numidian crane, 
karkaretu, karkaredu, karkareduka id. The simplest form of 
the word, which appears in Ma. kuru and the Sam. forms, is 
the basis of Skt. karatu, karetu Numidian crane. The suffixal 
element containing -t- in the Sanskrit words is somewhat 

There is also in Sanskrit a homophone kanka- m. meaning 
a kind of mango (Lex. = mahdrdjacuta). This can be compared 


in the same way to Ta. kokku mango tree. According to the 
commentator on Tolkdppiyam, Coll . 400, this is a Tulu 
word. The actual form in Tuju at present is kukku mango. 
The word does not seem to occur in the other South Dravidian 

The Sanskrit dictionaries give also kankd f. the scent of 
a lotus; a kind of sandal. Compare Ta. konku pollen; 
fragrance, odour. 

Skt. kara- m. tax (Mn. MBh., etc.) has no obvious connection 
in meaning with kara- in other senses. B.R. class it with 
kara- ray, beam, and derive it from ^/kf to strew, scatter, 
a derivation which is unsatisfactory semantically. A Dravidian 
etymology is available, as Tamil has a similar word, karai 
tax, tribute (Gil. 23, 127) ; cf. karavu id. (Pe.TM.). These 
Tamil words cannot be derived from the Sanskrit word, as 
they have a transparent etymology in Dravidian, being 
derived from a verb meaning * to milk ' : Ta. kara to milk, 
karappu milking, karavai milking ; a milch cow, Ma. karakka 
to milk, Ka. kare to milk. The metaphor is natural and 
familiar in Sanskrit literature: Saundarananda ii, 19, gam 
adharmena nddhuksat kslratarsena gam iva, Raghuvamsa i, 26, 
dudoiha gam sa yajndya, sasydya Maghavd divam. Compare 
also Manu vii, 129 : 

Yathdlpdlpam adanty ddyam vdryokovatsasatpaddh \ 
tathdlpdlpo grdhitavyo rdstrdd rdjndbdikah karah\ \ 


Skt. karota- m., karoti-, i f. is used in the sense of ' cup, 
bowl ' and also in the sense of ' skull '. It is not a common 
word, nor recorded early. Pali has karoti f. in the same senses. 
Compare the following Dravidian words : 

Ta. cirattai cocoanut shell, begging bowl, carattai id. (Loc.), 
Ma. ciratta cocoanut shell, chiefly the lower half. These 
represent an original *kiratte (cf. BSOAS. xi (1943) pp. 122 ff.). 
A variant form, with u instead of i in the first syllable, appears 


in Ma. kuratta nut, kernel ; cf. Tu. korantu the kernel or stone 
of fruit. With a as variant in the first syllable, Ka. has karata 
the shell of a cocoanut ; cf. Mar. karfi the shell of a cocoanut, 
a vessel made from it ; skull. The vocalism of the Sanskrit 
word bears the same relation to that of Ma. kuratta as is 
found in comparing Go. sawwor salt, malol hare with Ta.' 
uvar, muyal. The original meaning is * nut, cocoanut ', 
whence the meanings ' vessel J and ' skull ' develop. 

In Ka. kanta shell of a cocoanut the -r- has disappeared. 
There is also a whole series of words in Dravidian connected 
with the above and meaning ' nut ', in which an -r- has been 
lost : Ta. kottai nut, stone, kernel, Ma. kotta kernel of fruit, 
Ka. kotte the stone or kernel of fruit, gotta, gorate id., Tu. 
kotte the kernel of a nut, gottu id., Kur. goto, any seed which 
forms inside a fruit or shell, Malt, gota a seed or berry, Brah. 
gadda a fruit stone. The initial voicing in some of these 
words is, as frequently, a sign that an -r- was originally 

That the words above can be analysed into root + suffix, 
is indicated by Ta. kuru nut (Loc.), Ma. kuru kernel, nut. 


For ' mushroom, fungus ' Sanskrit has chattra-, literally 
* umbrella ', also chattraka-, chattrdka-, and more poetically 
ahicchatra(ka-) lit. * snake's umbrella '. Besides these words 
Manu and others have also kavaka- mushroom. This could 
be a Dravidian word corresponding in meaning to Skt. 
chattra- ; compare Ta. kavikai umbrella. The Tamil word is 
derived from a verb meaning to cover, just as Skt. chattra- 
is derived from chad- : Ta. kavi to cover, overspread, 
surround, cover with an umbrella, overshadow, kavippu 
covering, canopy, umbrella; cf. kavavu to embrace, kavai 
to contain within oneself, to include, Ma. kaviyuka to be 
overflown, Ka. kavi to cover, overspread, kavacu, kavicu 
to cause to overspread, to put on, Tu. kabiyuni to overspread, 
as clouds, Te. kaviyu to spread, fall upon ; cf. Ka. Tu. Te. 
gam cave. 


Kittel (Kann.-E. Diet., p. xxxii) derives from the same 
source Skt. kavaca- coat of mail, corset, jacket; bark of a 
tree. This etymology appears unobjectionable. Words from 
the same root in a similar specialized meaning are found in 
Kanarese : kavudi, kavadi a quilted cover, gavasanige a cover, 
'a wrapper, a cloth, a case, a sack ; any cover or case, gavasani 
id. A contracted form of this latter word is Ka. goni sack, 
Te. gone id., from which Skt. gom sack, is derived. The native 
Kanarese grammarians count goni as one of the 21 tatsamas, 
that is to say words which exist both in Kanarese and Sanskrit, 
but which they do not consider to be borrowed from Sanskrit. 


Skt. kavara- m. kavan f . a braid or fillet of hair, kavarabhdra- 
m., kavanbhara- m. a fine head of hair, kavarapuccha- m.f. 
(i) n. having a tail resembling a braid, Pan. iv, 1.55, Vartt. 2. 

^ Ta. kavari a chowrie (Narr 241, etc.), Ma. kavaram 
hairplait, kavari a woman with fine hair, Ka. kabari, kavari 
a braid or fillet of hair ; a knot of braided hair, Tu. kabari 
the tufted hair of females. 

The meanings given by the dictionaries vary between 
' braid of hair ' and ' tuft or knot of hair '. Probably the 
latter meaning should be given in all cases. That such is the 
meaning in Sanskrit, for instance, is indicated by the com- 
pounds kavarabhdra- and kavaribhara-. Kittel and Gundert 
treat the Kanarese and Malayalam words respectively as 
loans from Sanskrit. The opposite must be the case, firstly 
because the Sanskrit word is comparatively rare and has left 
no trace in the modern spoken languages, whereas it is 
thoroughly established in all the South Dravidian languages, 
and secondly because the other Dravidian words cannot be 
separated from Ta. kavari which on account of its different 
meaning cannot be derived from Sanskrit. The two meanings 
of the Dravidian words are, of course, easily reconciled, and 
a good parallel is offered by Ta. pittai hair-bundle, etc. 
(BSOAS. xi (1944) p. 348). The Skt. compound kavarapuccha-, 
which occurs only in the commentaries on Panini, is to be 


viewed in connection with Ta. kavari, and must mean therefore 
' having a bushy or tufted tail ', The meaning given in Monier- 
Williams' Dictionary, ' having a twisted tail or one resembling 
a braid J is misleading. 

Another Dravidian word meaning ' coil, tuft, or bundle of 
hair ' deserves mention here : Ta. koppu chignon, coil of hair, 
Ka. koppu a female's hair tied in a tuft, Te. koppu hair tied 
in a tuft worn at the back of the head, chignon, Kui kopa 
coil of woman's hair, Go. kupar the top knot of hair, Kur. 
khopd hair-bundle, chignon. This word has found its way 
into most of the modern Indo-aryan languages. See Nepali 
Dictionary s.v. khop 3 . The two words, koppu and kavari 
are connected ultimately. The addition of suffixes results 
frequently in the weakening of intervocalic consonants, so 
that kopp -f- oifi would be expected to give *kovari. The 
form kavari is explained by the fact that the distinction 
between o and a is not rigidly preserved in Dravidian. 


Skt. kavala- m. a mouthful, morsel, kavalaya- vb. to swallow, 
gulp down, devour, kavada- m. a mouthful of water, Pa. 
kabala-, kabala- m.n. a small piece, ball of food, mouthful, 
Pkt. kavala- m. id. For ModIA forms see Nep. Diet. s.v. 

The variation in Sanskrit between I and d points to an 
original I, which occurs in Pa. kabala-. This I also appears 
in Ta. kavalam morsel or mouthful of food, a word common 
in the early literature (Kurunt 170, Mullaip 36, etc.). 
A variant form kavaram is also found in Tamil (Kalit 80). 
The word is native to Dravidian, as shown by its connection 
with other words in those languages. Compare Ta. kavvu 
to bite, seize by the mouth, as a dog, Kui kavali giva to chew 
the cud. In accordance with the usual consonant alternation, 
the -v- is weakened out of an original -pp-, and therefore the 
following words are etymologically connected: Ma. kappu 
to snap at, eat as a dog, Ta. kappu to gorge, cram into the 


mouth, Tu. kappuni to eat greedily, Kui kappa to swallow, 
gulp, Kur. khappnd id. 


Skt. kulattha- m. a kind of pulse, Dolichos uniflorus, Hi. 
kulthl id., etc. (Nep. Diet. s.v. kurthi). 

<^Ta. kol horse-gram, Dolichos uniflorus (Puran , etc.), 
Ma. kollu, Tu. kudu id. The Dravidian words are equivalent 
to the first part of the Sanskrit word. The second part of 
the Sanskrit word is a rather obscure suffix which appears 
also in asvattha- Ficus religiosa, and with a different vowel in 
kapittha- Feronia elephantum. 

. 15 

Skt. kuta- appears in the dictionaries with a bewildering 
variety of meanings. In fact there is a whole bunch of 
homophones bearing this form which need carefully separating 
from each other. As they are mainly derived from Dravidian, 
that will be done here, and the etymologies, as far as available, 

In the first place it is necessary to get rid of one of the 
meanings provided, that is ' the bone of the forehead with its 
projections or prominences, horn '. This meaning is given 
by B.E. for the following passages : KV. x, 102, 4, AV. 8, 8, 16, 
SB. 3, 8, 1, 15, AitB. vi, 24. The authority for this rendering 
rests solely on Sayana's commentary on the passage in B ; 
different renderings are offered by him in the case of the BV. and 
AitB. passages. A study of the context in these four citations, 
and also in JB 1.49 shows that this rendering is unsuitable, 
and that in all cases the meaning is ( mallet ' or ' hammer ' : 
see Geldner, Vedische Studien i, 137-9, and Oldenberg, Noten 
on RV. x, 102, 4. Consequently KittePs comparison (Kan-Eng. 
Diet. p. xx) of Skt. tea-horn with Ka. kodu horn, Ta. kotu, etc., 
falls to the ground owing ''to the non-existence of such a 
meaning in Skt. It is possible that Sayana, a southerner, 
was influenced by Dravidian in his rendering of kuta- in the 


There remain the following homonymous words : 

(1) Skt. kuta- n. mallet; hammer EV., etc., kuta- n. 
a hammer, mallet for breaking small stones Lex., Pa. kuta- n. 
a hammer, Pa. kuda- n. stone hammer; in ModIA, apart 
from Sgh. kul hammer, this word is preserved only in forms 
which represent an original compound *hastakiita- (see 
Nep. Diet. s.v. hotro). As regards the etymology of this 
word we may reasonably follow Kittel (Kan.-Eng. Diet., 
p. xxxiii ; cf. J. Bloch, BSOS. v, 738) who compares it Ka. 
kuttu to beat, strike, pound, and its correlates, whence also 
Skt. kutt-, kuttayati to pound, etc., are derived (BSOAS. 
xi, 134). Compare Ta. kuttu to cuff, strike with the fists, 
kottu to beat, strike, pound, Ma. kottu to beat, kuttu to pound, 
kotti a mallet, Ka. kuttu to pound, kodati a wooden hammer, 
Tu. kuttuni, kottu a spade, Te. kottu to beat, strike, Malt. 
qote to knock, strike, break, Kur. khottnd to break. 

(2) kuta- n. part of a plough, ploughshare, body of a plough ; 
Hi. kur body of plough, Panj. kur bottom of plough, La. kur 
ploughshare. This word is not common in Sanskrit, and is 
quoted only from native lexicons; on the other hand it is 
quite widespread in ModIA. Superficially it might seem 
plausible to identify it with the last word, but as there are 
some similar words in Dravidian with exactly the same meaning, 
it is better to follow Kittel (Kann. Eng. Diet. p. xxxiii) and 
derive it directly from them. Compare Ta. koru bar of metal, 
ploughshare, Ma. koru ploughshare, Ka. hum, guru a bar of 
iron, a ploughshare, Tu. koru a bar of metal. 

(3) kuta- n. summit, top, summit or peak of a mountain, 
kutdgdra- an upper room, apartment on the top of a house, 
trikuta-, citrakuta-, grdhrakiita- names of mountains, amsakuta- 
the tip of the shoulder, aksikiita- the corner of the eye next 
to the nose 1 , Pa. kuta- pinnacle, top, peak, Pkt. kuda- top 
of a mountain, etc., Sgh. kul summit. 

^ Ta. kotu summit of a hill, mountain, peak, kuvatu top 

1 Aksikute = aksindsikayob sandhl (Mitaks. on Yajn 3.96), not ' the 
prominent part of the forehead above the eye ' (MW. following B.R.). 
Pali has akkhikoti- beside akkhikuta- which makes the meaning clearer. 


of a hill, peak ; mountain, hill, Ma. kotu end, corner, kuvatu 
hill, mountain top, Ka. kodu a point; the peak or top of 
a hill, Malt, qoru the end, the top as of a tree. 

From the same source is derived Skt. kali- f. tip of a bow, 
tip, top, point, highest point, etc. The Dravidian words with 
a suffix -i, which are nearest to this, have suffered shortening 
of the first vowel : Ma. koti top, extremity, tip (of finger, 
tongue, nose, etc.), Ka. kudi a pointed end, a point, Tu. 
kodi point, end, extremity, Te. kodi tip, top ; the end of 
point or flame. 

(4) kuta- m. a heap, multitude, collection (samuha-), Pa. 
kuta- heap, accumulation, sankdrakuta- rubbish heap ; Or. 
kurha heap. The etymology of this word is correctly given 
by Kittel (Kan.-Eng. Did. p. xxxix) who connects it with 
Ka. kuta collection, multitude, heap, a noun derived from 
the verb kudu to come together, assemble, etc. The relevant 
Dravidian words are as follows : Ta. kutu to come together, 
congregate, assemble, kuttam union, combination; crowd, 
flock, etc., Ma. kutuka to come together, meet, etc., kuttam 
junction, assembly, flock, heap, Ka. kudu to join, etc., kuta 
joining, coming together; heap, multitude, assemblage, Tu. 
kuduni to meet, kuta assembly, Te. kudu to come together, 
kutamu meeting, union, kutuva heap, collection. 

(5) kuta- adj. mfn. false, untrue, deceitful, sb. n. fraud, 
untruth, falsehood ; frequent in cpds. like kutasdksin- false 
witness, etc., Pa. kuta- n. falsehood, deceit, Pkt. kudo- id. ; 
Mar. kudd false, treacherous and related words in ModlA. 
(J. Bloch, Langue Maraihe p. 312). This word is connected 
with the following words meaning ' crooked ' in Skt. : kut-, 
kutati to become crooked or curved, kuti- 1 f. curvature in 
bhrukuti- 1 t kutika- bent, crooked, kutila- bent, crooked; 
dishonest, fraudulent. All these words are derived from 
Dravidian. The Dravidian words can conveniently be divided 
into those with a long vowel (whence kuta-) and those which 
have suffered a shortening of the radical vowel (whence kut-). 

(a) Ta. kotu to bend, be crooked ; (sb.) crookedness, flexurej 
kottam bend, curve ; crookedness of mind ; bending from the 


path of justice, Ma. kotuka to be crooked, twisted, awry, 
kottam crookedness, distortion, Kui konda to be curly, bent, 
twisted, gotori hooked, bent like a hook. 

(6) Ta. kotu crooked; unjust, wicked, etc., kuta curved, 
bent, kutakkam bend, curve, crookedness, kutanku to bend, 
kutantai curve, kutavu, kutd bend, curve, Ma. kotu bent 
(kotun-kai) Ka. kudu bent, crooked. 

(6) kuta- n. a trap, snare for birds and wild beasts, Ram., 
etc., 1 Pa. kuta-, Pkt. kuda- id. At first sight this might 
seem to belong together with the last. It is better, however, 
to derive it directly from the following Dravidian words : 

Ta. kutu nest, bird-cage, coop, hive, Ma. kutu receptacle, 
nest, cage, Ka. gudu nest, dove-cot, cage ; trap for catching 
wild animals, Tu. giidu nest, bird-cage, Te. gudu nest, cage, 
Go. kutinj a stone-fall trap, such as boys set for birds, Kuvi 
kuda (Fitzg., presumably kuda) a cage (made of bamboo), 
Kui klrenji a cage, cage-trap. 

(7) kuta- m., kuti f. a house, dwelling Lex. These are variants 
with a long vowel of the more usual forms with a short vowel, 
kuta- house, kuti- l f. hut, cottage. These are derived from 
Dravidian ; Ta. kuti hut, house, etc., BSOAS. xi (1943) p. 137. 
Compare also, in addition to the forms quoted there, Ta. 
kottil shed, hut, cowstall, kottakai shed with sloping roof, 
cowstall, marriage pandal, Ma. kottil cowhouse ; shed, barn, 
workshop ; house, Ka. kottage a stall or outhouse, Tu. kotta 
a hut or dwelling of Koragars, Te. kotika a hamlet, small 
village, kottamu a stable for cattle and horses, kottdyi a thatched 
shed. The Sanskrit lexicographers have also preserved a 
variant with the vowel o : Skt. kota- m. shed, hut. 

(8) kuta- n. pot, pitcher Lex. More common is the variant 
with a short vowel, kuta- m. id. This is derived from Dravidian : 
Ta. kutam pot, Ka. Koda, etc., BSOAS. xi (1943) p. 138. 

(9) kutd- mf (a)n. without horns, of an animal, AV, TS, etc., 

1 kuta- in AV. 8, 8, 16, the passage referred to above, is explained by 
some as meaning 'trap'. This is supported by the mention of pdsa- in the 
previous line, the two being often mentioned together. On the other hand 
the verb han- which is used with it points more in the direction of 
' hammer, mallet '. 


Pa. kuta- id. This is possibly Dravidian. Compare Ta. kurai 
that which is short, kuraik-kitd tailless he-buffalo, kuraik- 
kompan an ox with blunt horns, kuraik-kai maimed hand, 
kurai-nari a short-tailed fox, Ka. kuk, kure stump, stubble. 


Skt. kurpara- m. the elbow, Susr., etc., Pa. kappara-, 
Pkt. koppara- id. 

~Ta. koppardm elbow, Ka. koppara shoulder-blade 
(Kittel, with question mark as to exact meaning), Te. 
kopparamu, kopramu, kopru id. The irregularity of the 
vowel of the first syllable is an indication that the IA words 
are borrowed. What connection, if any, exists between these 
words and Skt. kaphoni- elbow, is not easy to say. 


Skt. kaurukuca- mf()n. appears as a hapax legomenon in 
Pddatdditaka v. 5, and its meaning ' given to grumbling ' is 
made clear by the context : 

Na prapnuvanti yatayo ruditena moksam 

svargayatim na parihasakatha runaddhi | 

tasmat pratitamanasa hasitavyam eva 

vrttim budhena khalu kaurukucim vihaya|| 

" Hermits do not attain salvation by weeping, and gay chatter 

does not bar the approach to heaven ; therefore a wise man 

must laugh with cheerful mind, putting aside the habit of 

grumbling." The derivative form kaurukuca- presupposes 

a simple form from which it is derived ; this must have 

been either *kurukuca- or *kurukucd. Such a form is not 

recorded in the Skt. dictionaries, but a very similar word is 

found in Tulu : kurukucci grumbling, murmuring. The rare 

Sanskrit word is therefore in all probability of Dravidian 

origin. Ultimately, of course, the word is onomatopoeic. 


The following words meaning ' saw ' are found in Sanskrit 
and the languages derived from it : Skt. krakaca- MBh., etc., 


Pa. kakaca, Pkt. karakaya- ; Skt. karapatra-, Mar. karvat, 
Nep. kardti, etc. ; Pa. khara- a saw. It does not make much 
sense to derive karapattra- from kara- hand ; it can, however, 
be reasonably connected with the other words in this list, all 
of which are derived from Dravidian. The phonetic 
irregularities involved have their explanation in the fact 
that the words are borrowed. The following Dravidian 
words can be compared : 

Ta. karukku teeth of a saw, jagged edge of a palmyra leaf, 
Ma. karikku edge of teeth, karukku teeth of a saw, Ka. karku, 
karaku rough, jagged edge, Tu. gargdsu a saw, Te. karakasa 
roughness, karagasamu a saw. 

The Dravidian words are derived from a root kar- meaning 
' hard, rough, uneven ', and the saw is so named on account of 
its jagged edge. Many Dravidian words are derived from 
this base : Ta. karakara^ to feel irritation as from sand or 
grit in the eye ; to be hoarse, karatu roughness, ruggedness, 
unevenness ; knot as in wood, karil severity, pungency, 
karan the uneven surface in vegetables and fruits, karumai 
severity, cruelty, Ma. karatu what is rough, uneven, hard, 
kari-mul a hard thorn, karukarukka to be harsh, sharp, rough, 
karuma hardness, sharpness of a sword, strength of a man, 
Ka. karadu that which is rough, uneven, unpolished, hard, 
karku, karaku rough, jagged edge, etc., garaku, garku jagged- 
ness, unevenness, roughness, uneven surface, garusu gravel, 
Tu. karnkallu gravel, hard sand, karadu rough, coarse, garu 
rough, kargota hardness, hard-heartedness, Te. kara sharp, 
karakasa roughness, karusu rough, harsh, gari, garusu gravel. 

Eelated words in the Uralian languages can be quoted here : 
Fi. karkea rough, hard, karea durus, siccus, karaista durare, 
karhea asper, durus, karmea austerus, asper, LpN. garas hart, 
garrat, garam hart werden, erstarren, Voty. kurit bitter, 
scharf schmeckend, Zyr. kurid id. | SamJe. korega'a hart, etc. 

The following Skt. words are also derived from this source : 
khara- adj. hard, harsh, rough, sharp, pungent, acid, etc., 
kharu harsh, cruel ; karkara- hard, firm, karkasa hard, firm, 
rough, harsh. Of these khara- corresponds to the simple 

PHTLO. TRANS. 1945. H 


forms like Te. kara sharp ; karkara- is based on a reduplicated 
form as in Ma. karukarukka to be harsh, sharp, rough; 
karkasa-, like Te. karakasa roughness, arises by a special 
form of reduplication, that is the addition of a ' tag ', slightly 
modified in form from the first, radical syllable. Skt. krakaca- 
saw, arises in the same way, and its initial kra- is due to a 
phonetic development seen in some Dravidian languages 
(e.g. Telugu, Kui) by which r is transposed. (Compare Te. 
krakku to vomit < *karkku : Ta. kakku with assimilation.) 


Skt. khand-, Mandate to tear, break into pieces, khandayati 
to cut, divide, tear in pieces, khanda- m.n. a piece cut off, 
fragment, bit. 

^ Ta. kentu to cut up ; to dig, kintu to scratch, dig, hoe, etc., 
Ma. kintu to dig, Ka. gindu to pinch with the nails, Te. cendu 
to cut, cendddu to cut to pieces, Malt, kinde to cut flesh or 
fish. BSOAS. xi (1943), p. 136 ; ib. (1944), p. 344 (Uralian 
correspondences) . 


An author of a treatise on the art of theft is mentioned 
from time to time in Sanskrit literature under the name of 
Kharapata. I The same author appears in Tamil as Karavatan, 
and his treatise is mentioned in Cilappadhikdram xvi, 189, 
where it is called karavitam. The author is also, -and more 
commonly in Sanskrit, known by the name of Karmsuta. 
Of these names Kharapata is merely a Sanskritization of the 
Tamil name, which is also a word meaning ' thief ', derived 
from the verb kara to steal : cf. Ta. kara vb. to conceal, hide, 
disguise; to steal, pilfer; (intr.) to he hidden, karappu 
concealing, hiding ; theft, fraud, deceit, karavu concealment, 
theft, deceit, karavar thieves, karaval concealment, karavatam 
act or practice of stealing, deceit, karavatar thieves deceivers, 
Ka. kare to hide, Te. karati deceiver, cheat, Kur. kharnd 
to steal. The suffix in karavaton, etc., can be compared with 
that in araWiata-, etc. (no. 5). 

1 Mattavilasaprahasana, etc. 



Skt. capeta- m. (Divyav.), capetd f. (Pat.), capeti f. (Balar.) 
a slap with the open hand ; Pkt. capetd, cavidd, caveld f. id. ; 
Nep. capetd a slap, D. pash. capilu slap, Ass. sdpar blow with 
the palm, Si. capdta f. slap, Mar. cdptl a slap or smack; 
Nep. cametd slap, blow with the palm of the hand, La. camdta, 
Si. camdta id. (see Nep. Diet. s.vv.). 

~ Ta. cappdni clapping hands, Ka. capparisu to slap, to 
pat, cappali clapping the hands, cappale, cappate id., cappalisu 
to slap, pat, tappalisu id., Tu. cappali clapping the hands, 
cappalipuni to clap the hands, Te. cappata a clap of the hands, 
cappatincu to clap, slap, cappatlu (pi.) clapping of the hands ; 
Te. camaru to slap with the open hand ; (with loss of initial c-) 
Ka. apparisu to throw to the ground (in wrestling), appalisu 
to strike against, to flap, slap, Tu. appalipuni to strike against 
anything with the open hand, to squash, Te. appalamu 
clapping, flapping, striking, appalincu to flap, slap, touch; 
smear, apply ; appalinta slapping, tapping. 1 

Since the meaning of the above words is usually to hit 
with the flat hand, it would seem that there must be some 
etymological connection between these words and Skt. 
carpata- m., carpati f. the open palm of the hand (Lex.) ; 
cf. Be. cdpar open palm, Or. cdpurd id. Note also that Te. 
capetamu, which is a loanword from Skt. capeta-, means ' the 
palm of the hand with the fingers extended ', though this 
meaning is not recorded for the Sanskrit word. 

Skt. carpata- also means ' lying flat ' (ears) ; cf. Nep. 
capleti flat, Mar. cdpat, capdd flat, low, Gu. cdpat low and 
flat, Hi. cdpar flat expanse of land, etc. With variations of 
the initial vowel we have also : Skt. cipata- flat-nosed (Lex.), 
cipita- flat, flattened (VarBrS.), Pkt. civida, cimidha, cividha-, 
Mar. civdd crushed fruits, etc. ; further Nep. cepto flat, Kash. 
cepot" flat-nosed, Or. cepd, ceptd flat. 

These words are further connected with verbs meaning 

1 This form without initial c- has been Sanskritized into asphalayati 
strikes with the flat hand ; cf. Pkt. apphalei strikes, apphaclia- struck, 
Guj. aphalvu to dash against, etc. (Nep. Diet. s.v. aphdlnu). 


' to flatten, to press, to crush ' : Pa. cippiyamdna- crushed 
flat, Pkt. cayrpai, campai presses, Hi. cajmd to press, Gu. 
cdpvu, etc. ; Mar. cipnem to press, civadnem to crush, Be. 
cipd to press, etc. ; Nep. cepnu to press, squeeze, depress, 
Mar. cepnem to press, crush, Hi. cepnd to stick on, paste on, etc. 
Corresponding to these words we have in Dravidian : Ta. 
cappattai flatness, anything flat, cappali to flatten, cappu to 
be bent, pressed in, cappai that which is flattened, Ma. cippu 
what is smoothed, flat, Ka. capate flatness, cappate id., cappe 
that which is flattened or pressed down, Te. cappi flat, not 
projecting, cappidi flat, not projecting, snub. With loss of 
initial c-, Ka. has dialectally appate flatness. The same loss 
of initial c- is to be presumed in the case of Ta. appu to stick 
or clap on with the hand as sandal paste, with a trowel, as 
mortar, to apply, put on (for the meaning cf. Hi. 
Ma. appi plaster. 


Skt. cikkana- adj. unctuous, slippery; sb. n. any smooth 
liquid, gum ; Mar. cikan tough, gummy, glutinous, unctuous, 
etc., Mar. Gu. cik gum, resin. 

^ Ta. cikku to be stuck fast ; (sb.) a tangle, being entangled, 
stuck; stickiness of the hair due to oil, cikkena firmly, 
tenaciously, tightly, Ma. cikku being entangled, intricacy, 
cikkuka to be stuck, entangled, Ka. sikku to be caught, 
entangled, cigil, jigil to be sticky, gummy, viscid, glutinous, 
Tu. tikkuni to be ensnared, caught, tikkatuni to be matted, 
as hair, Te. cikku tangle ; to be entangled, stuck, cikka badu 
to become thick or inspissated, cikkani thick or inspissated 
as a liquid ; dense, close as texture, etc. 

The meanings given for cikkana- in Monier-Williams' 
Dictionary, * smooth, slippery, unctuous,' are badly chosen 
and to a great extent misleading. Substitute ' viscous, sticky, 
gummy, glutinous, etc.' 

Skt. cikkhalla- mud, and its derivatives (Mar. cikhal, etc.) 
may reasonably be held to be derived from this same source. 


Skt. cira- n. a strip, long narrow piece of bark or cloth, 
rag, tatter, clothes ; the dress of a Buddhist monk ; a stripe, 
stroke, line, civara- m. iron filings ; n. the dress or rags of 
a religious monk, Pa. cira- n. bark, fibre ; a bark dress ; 
a strip, ciraka- n. bark; a strip, cwara- n. the robe of a 
Buddhist mendicant ; Nep. ciro a splinter, cut, slice, Hi. cir 
a strip, Gu. cir a slit, ciro a long piece of canvas, Mar. cir 
underclothes, cira a strip of cloth, etc. (See Nep. Diet, s.v.) 

^ Ta. civu to pare off, shave or scrape off, cival parings, 
shavings, cirai bark of a tree used as clothing (Tirumuruk 
126) ; cloth, rags, tatters, citar to scratch as a fowl ; to be 
worn out, torn, as cloth (citarina cirai, Perumpdn 468, 
Comm.) ; to separate, split, cut, hack ; sb. rag ; cloth, 
citarvai cloth worn out or reduced to a rag (Perumpdn 468), 
citar cloth, rag (Puran 150) ; thin bark of certain trees used 
as clothing, Ma. civuka to scrape, peel, polish, cival thinness 
of cloth, cir a line, Ka. sigur a splinter or shiver ; what is 
pared off, rind, sibaru, sivaru, swum id., civvu to cut thin, 
shave or scrape ; to peel or bark, civu id., ciru a shiver or 
fragment, sibu a bamboo slit, sire cloth, garment; female's 
garment, sira line, stripe, Tu. sire a females' garment, Te. 
civvu to cut, shave, pare, ciru to slash, gash, rend, tear, slice, 
cira a female's garment ; any cloth in general, jira a line, 
a streak, a stripe. 

Skt. cira- represents a contracted and Skt. civara an 
uncontracted form of the same word. Compare Skt. (Lex.) 
nivara- water ; mire : nira- water < Dr. (Ta., etc.) riir 
water, and Dr. ir, sir, cir nits, contracted out of *civar 
(BSOAS. xi (1944), p. 349). The form in Dravidian corre- 
sponding most exactly to Skt. civara- is Ka. sivaru, sivuru. 
This is fairly evidently derived from forms without an r- 
suffix, Ka. civvu to cut thin, shave, peel, bark, etc. ; cf. Ka. 
sibu a bamboo slit. Some difficulty is caused by the various 
intervocalic consonants that appear in some of the Dravidian 
words, namely -t- in Ta. citar, etc., and -g- in Ka. siguru. 
That latter is probably only a substitute for -v-, as happens 


sometimes. On the other hand Ta. -t- presumably represents 
an original spirant or sibilant (cf. Kui sespa to scrape, plane, 
shave a stick or piece of wood) which has otherwise dis- 
appeared or been replaced by -v-. 

Skt. cela- n. clothes, garment, is also to be connected with 
these words. Compare Ta. citalai small piece of cloth, rag, 
citaval strip of cloth, rag, torn piece of cloth ; torn piece ; 
cutting off, cropping, which have an I- suffix in place of the 
/-suffix in Ta. citar, citdr. With contraction we have Ta. cilai 
cloth, garment, Ma. clla cloth, which correspond exactly 
with Skt. cela-. The difference of the long vowel in the two 
cases is due to the fact that both are the result of a contraction. 
Compare further Te. cilu to break, split, be torn, cllucu to 
split, tear, cllika a slice, slit, sliver, shiver, Ka. sU to split, 
be cleft ; (sb.) split, piece, fragment. 


Skt. cumb-, cumbati to kiss. 

^ Ta. cuppu to suck, cumpu to suck, fondle with the lips, 
Ta. Ma. umpu to suck, Tu. jumbuni to suck, sip, lick, Kui 
jupa, jumba to suck, Kuvi jupali id. ; Malt cumqe to kiss 
(possibly re-borrowing from IA.) ; Brah. cuping to suck. 

Dravidian has also a variant series of words with -1- instead 
of -u- : Ta. cvppu to suck, Ka. cipu, sipu id., Te. cipu to make 
a sound with the lips, Kur. cipnd to suck, Malt, cipe id. 


Skt. tata- m. slope, rounded side of a hill ; any rounded 
portion of the body (stana-tata-, sroni-tata) ; bank, shore, 
Pa. tata- side of a hill, side of a river or bank, Pkt. tada- 
bank, shore ; Be. tar, Or. tard, Hi. tar bank. 

^ Ta. tittu rising ground, bank, elevation ; sand-bank, 
tittai sand-bank; raised floor, veranda, titar bank, island, 
rubbish-heap, tital id., titaru mound, tatal high-land (Coll.) 
Ma. titta raised ground, hillock, shoal ; raised seat as in a 
veranda, tittu a mound, shoal, Ka. tittu rising ground, a 


hillock, diddu eminence, elevation, hillock, dada bank, shore, 
dande id., Tu. diddu elevated ground, mound, Tod. (Pope) 
ditu hill, Te. titta heap, mound. 

A fluctuation in Dravidian between a and i (also u) in 
the radical syllable is a feature very commonly met with, 
although the conditions that cause it are not very clear. 
Compare the following instances : Ta. katdvu to drive, Ma. 
kitdvuka id. ; Ta. katd male buffalo : Ma. kitdvu ; Ta. alantai 
tank, pond : ilantai id. ; Ta. malai to put on wear : Ta. milai 
id. ; Ta. atdr a trap : itdr id. ; Ka. dadumu thickness, stout- 
ness : Tu. didumbu corpulence ; Ka. midi heel : mada id. ; 
Ka. inaci squirrel : Ta. anil id., etc., etc. The difference in 
vowel between Skt. tata- and Ta. tittu, etc., is of the 
same kind. 

Intervocalically a single unvoiced consonant in Sanskrit 
very often replaces a double consonant in Dravidian : cf . capetd 
(no. 21), pitaka-, puta- (no. 39), etc. 

As Professor Turner points out (Nep. Diet. s.v. taldu) 
this word should be separated from Skt. taddga- m. tank, 
pond, and Skt. tatdka- which also appears is a mistaken form 
due to the influence of tata-. This word taddga- is also of 
Dravidian origin, and can be compared with the following 
words : Ta. tatu to hinder, obstruct, tatakku obstacle, impedi- 
ment, tatam ridge, dam, causeway ; pond (Kalif 17), tatavu 
pond (Puran 105) ; prison, tatai to hinder, stop ; (sb.) 
obstacle, impediment ; door ; bund, embankment, Ma. tata 
resistance, tatayuka to be obstructed, tatavu what resists, 
wards off ; a prison, tatekka to stop, prevent, Ka. tada check, 
impediment, delay, tadapu hindrance, impediment, tade to 
stop, impede ; (sb.) a check, impediment, obstacle, Tu. 
tadepini to check, hinder, etc., tade a delay, hindrance, dade 
an obstacle, hindrance ; a screen, blind, Te. tada hindrance, 
obstruction, prevention, tadayu to delay. 

Skt. taddga- means an artificial tank or lake, and it is so 
called on account of the bund, dam, or embankment by which 
the waters are contained. The word would appear also to 
have this latter sense sometimes, for instance, in the com- 


pound taddgabhedaka-, Mn. ix, 279, where Kulluka uses the 
term setubheda- in his paraphrase. 

For this development of meaning compare Ta. tirai, Ka. 
kere tank, etc., which have likewise developed from a verb 
meaning to restrain : Ta. ceru to shut in, restrain, prevent, 
Ka. kiru to confine, shut in, etc. (BSOAS. xi, 125). 


Skt. taranga- m. wave, is usually explained as taram-ga- 
' across-goer ', a compound like patam-ga-, plavam-ga-, etc. 
This is not very satisfactory semantically, since it is difficult 
to see why a term of such vague and general meaning should 
have developed the meaning of ' wave ' in particular, and 
that meaning only a better etymology can be provided by 
comparing the following Dravidian words : 

Ta. tiranku to be wrinkled, crumpled, to be curled as the 
hair, tirai to be wrinkled, rolled; to roll as waves; (sb.) 
a wrinkle ; a curtain ; a wave, Ma. lira a roll, as of paper ; 
wave ; curtain, tirekkuka to roll up, wind up, tirappu rolling, 
Ka. tere a wave ; what can be rolled up and unrolled, a curtain ; 
a fold, wrinkle, Tu. sere a wave, Te. tera screen, curtain; 

Skt. taranga- corresponds exactly in form to Ta. tiranku. 
This would give Ka. *teragu, Te. *teragu, but the alternative 
form Ta. tirai, Ka. tere, etc., has usually prevailed in South 
Dravidian. The meaning ' wave ' in Dravidian is developed 
from the meaning ' wrinkle, crinkle, fold ', since waves give 
to the surface of the water the appearance of being crinkled. 
This peculiarity of meaning makes it quite certain that the 
Sanskrit word is in fact derived from this Dravidian source, 
because in contradistinction to other words meaning wave in 
Sanskrit, taranga- has also the meaning ' wrinkle, fold '. As 
examples of this last meaning we can quote the compound 
carmataranga- a fold of skin (Lex.), and Kaihas 84, 7 vali- 
trayatarangitdm ; of wavy or crinkled hair, tarangitasiroruha- 
Mdnasoll iii, 20, 28 ; cf. also Dhurtavitasamvdda 3 : 
kruddhastnbhrukutitarangakutild vidyullatd dyotate, and 


Padmaprdbhrtaka 7 : kim krtvd bhrukutltarangavisamam 
rosoparaktam mukham, etc. 

The other Sanskrit words for ' wave ' cannot be used in 
this sense, and they differ from taranga- inasmuch as they 
denote a wave from point of view of its motion. Such is the 
case with the one word of Indo-European origin for ' wave ', 
Skt. urmi- : AS. wielm, etc., and also with kallola-, lahari- 
which were shown to be of Dravidian origin (see above no. 3). 
The same is probably true of Skt. vici-, 1 f. wave, which Kittel 
(I A i, p. 237) plausibly derives from Drav. (Kan.) bisu to 
wave, swing, etc. This is better than his later suggestion 
(Kan.-Eng. Diet. p. xlii) which connects it with Ka. blgu to 
swell, etc. The following is a list of the Drav. words connected 
with Ka. bisu : Ta. vicu to flap, as wings, to swing, as the 
arm, to wave, to swing and cast a net ; to fan ; to blow as 
the wind, viccu swinging, oscillation ; beat, flap of wings, 
viciru to wave to and fro, brandish; to swing the arms in 
walking ; to fan, viciri a fan, Ma. vicuka to fan ; to blow, of 
the wind ; to cast a net, vicci a fan, viccu throwing a net ; 
a back-stroke, vlyuka to fan; to brandish, swing, wield; 
to flap; the wind to blow; to throw nets, visuka to fan; 
to blow ; to throw a net, viseri a fan, visari id., Ka. bisu to 
swing, whirl, wave ; to fan ; to throw a net, to blow, as the 
wind, Tu. bijata waving, swinging, fanning, bijuni to swing, 
blow as the wind, bipu casting, throwing ; blowing of the 
wind ; waving hands, blsuni to fan, wave, swing, cast, Te. 
visaru, visuru to throw, wave, whirl, blow as the wind, vlcu 
to blow as the wind ; to wave, vicopu a chowrie, vivana a fan, 
a whisk; vivali wind, Kui vinja to blow, to fan. In the 
specialized meaning of ' fan, to fan ' this Dravidian family of 
words has given to Sanskrit vij-, vyaj- to fan, vljana-, vyajana- 
a fan. From the general sense ' swing, wave, oscillate ', the 
meaning ( wave ' of Skt. vici- can reasonably be derived. 
In form it corresponds exactly with Ma. vicci. There is 
a gradation of the intervocalic consonant in Dravidian which 
is reflected in Sanskrit with vici- on the one hand and vlj- 
on the other. 



Skt. tarala- mf (a)n. moving to and fro, trembling, tremulous ; 
unsteady, vain, taralayati makes to tremble, taraldyate 

< ' Ka. teral to move, shake, stir, tremble, quiver, Te. 
teralu to moye, to toss about, be routed, taralu to stir, move, 
proceed ; with transposition of r and I : Ka. talar to move, 
tremble, totter; moving, trembling, tottering, talar-adi 
a trembling step, talar-nade a trembling, tottering walk, Ta. 
talar to be relaxed, slack, talarcci slackness, debility, Ma. 
talaruka to relax, become slack. 

Skt. tarala- m. the central gem of a necklace, is a different 
word from the above. It is to be referred to the following 
Dravidian group : Ta. tiral to become round, globular ; 
(sb.) ball, globe, round mass, tiral-mani-vatam a kind of neck- 
lace (Inscr.), tiralai a solid round object, Ma. tiral a ball, 
Ka. teralu to ball itself, to become round, terale a round lump. 


Skt. talina- mf (a)n. thin, fine ; slender, meagre ; small, 
little ; separate, having spaces ; clear. 

~ Ka. tel thinness, fineness, delicateness, smallness, tellage 
thin, delicate ; thinly ; thinness ; diluted state, tellane, 
tellanna id., telupu thinness ; delicateness, fineness ; diluted, 
watery state, Tu. telpu thinness; thin, lean; few, little, 
tellena thinnish. 

Out of these Ka. tellane, Tu. tellena correspond in form to 
Skt. talina-. In these words Ka. -ane, Te. -ena is an adjectival 
suffix which has developed in these languages, and in Telugu, 
out of what was originally the infinitive of the verb to say 
(an-, en-, in-) used adverbially. Compare (no. 22 above) 
Te. cikkani thick, inspissated, with Ta. cikk-ena firmly, 


Skt. tuvara-, tubara- mfn. astringent, Pkt. tuvara- id. 

~ Ta. tuvar vb. to be astringent ; sb. astringency, astringent 
substance, tuvarppu astringent taste, astringency, harshness, 


Ma. tuvaruka to grow dry, Ka. tuvara, tovara, togari, togaru 
astringent, an astringent taste, Kui torpa to be astringent. 

The following similar words have apparently nothing to do 
with the above group : Skt. tubari, tubarikd f. Cajanus 
Indicus (Lex.) | Ta. tuvarai Cajanus Indicus (Perunk ), Ma. 
tuvara ( < tuvar on account of its taste, Gt.), Ka. togari, 
tovari, Tu. togari, togare id. In this case also the Sanskrit 
word is to be regarded as derived from the Dravidian. 


Skt. dadru-, dadru f. a cutaneous eruption, kind of leprosy, 
dardu, dardru- f. id, dadruna-, dardruna- leprous, Pa. daddu 
a kind of cutaneous eruption; for ModIA derivatives see 
Nep. Diet. s.v. dad. 

f^ Ka. taddu, daddu, dadru cutaneous and herpetic eruptions, 
herpes ; a kind of leprosy ; a ringworm, Tu. taddu an eruption 
or swelling, erysipelas, daddu ringworm, herpes, Te. daddu, 
dadduru a cutaneous disease, herpes, Kuvi (Fitzg.) tadu 
ringworm, Kui dado, dadu rough white patches on the skin 
that cause irritation and itching, dry itch. 

The fluctuation between surd and sonant in the case of the 
initial consonant is a feature of Dravidian, and therefore an 
indication that the word is original in these languages. Santali 
dad ringworm is a loanword from Indo- Aryan. 


Skt. nagara- n. town, city is borrowed into Dravidian as 
Ma. nagaram, Ta. nakar am, Ka. nagara, Te. nagaramu. In 
addition to these loanwords we find also the following: 
Ta. nakar house, abode, mansion; palace, temple, shrine, 
hall ; town city, Ma. nakar a town, Te. nagaru a palace. 
Of these the Tamil word is common in the earliest literature, 
and for that reason, and because of the difference in meaning, 
cannot be regarded as a loanword from Sanskrit. On the 
other hand, in view of the practical identity of the forms, and 
because the Sanskrit word has no IE etymology, there would 
seem to be every reason for deriving the Sanskrit word from 


the Dravidian. From a general meaning * habitation ' the 
specialized meanings of ' palace, etc.', on the one hand, and 
' town ' on the other easily develop. Compare Skt. pura- 
' house, abode ; fortress, castle ; city, town '. 

Initial n- is an unstable sound in Dravidian, and there is 
frequent alternation between words with and without n- in 
all the Dravidian languages : Ta. nir water, w damp, etc., etc. 
Consequently we can reasonably derive Skt. agdra-, agdra- n. 
house, abode, from the same source. As frequently, there is 
no strict correspondence in vowel-length in the word as 
borrowed into Sanskrit. 

Analysing these forms, it is to be observed that -ar is a 
common suffix in Dravidian, and we can therefore compare 
further Ta. akam in the sense of house (akattdn householder, 
Ndlati ). The general meaning of Ta. akam is * the inside ', 
from which the meaning of ' abode ' could develop (akam 
inside, at home, opposed to puram outside). For the meaning 
town compare also the Tamil compounds aka-nilai town, 
akap-pd a fortified wall. 


Skt. nwara- m. wild rice, VS., etc., Pa nwdra- raw rice, 

^ Ta. navarai a kind of paddy, nakarai id., Ma. navira, 
naviri, nakara a rice that ripens within two or three months, 
Tu. navare a kind of rice. 

For the fluctuation between the vowels a and i in the first 
syllable, compare the examples given above (no. 25). 


Skt. pan-, panate to negotiate, bargain; to stake, lay a 
wager, pana- m. a bet or wager; a compact, stipulation, 
agreement, treaty ; the thing staked or the sum played for. 

^ Ta. punai to tie ; (sb.) tie, bond ; pledge, security, 
surety, Ka. pone bond, bail ; a bondsman, a surety, a bail, 
Tu. pune security, bail ; with variation in the initial vowel : 
Ta. pinai (vb.) to tie, bind, fasten ; (sb.) tie, bond ; agreement ; 


bail, security, guarantee ; pledge, Ma. pinekka to tie, pina 
tying, yoke ; being involved, bail, surety, Ka. pene to tie ; 
being tied, Te. pena tie, bond. 


Skt. panda- eunuch, weakling, pandaka-, pandra-, pandraka- 
id., Pa. pandaka- id. 

^ Ta. pen woman, female, pentu woman, wife, pentir 
pi. women, petai female of birds, pettai female of animals or 
birds ; woman, girl, pettaiyan hermaphrodite, effeminate man, 
petu female of birds and certain animals; hermaphrodite, 
peti hermaphrodite, petai female of birds, hen, Ma. pen 
female, woman, girl, penti a girl, woman, pennan an effeminate 
man, peta, pita hen, petta the female of birds ; the female of 
asses, camels, Ka. pen female, woman, penda id., pendati 
wife, hete, hente hen, Tu. ponna female, feminine, ponnu 
a girl, female, maid, ponjavu, ponjevu a female in general; 
a woman, Te. penti the female of any animal or plant, pendili 
marriage, pendlamu wife, spouse, consort, petta hen, female of 
any bird, pedi eunuch, hermaphrodite, pede a beardless man, 
Malt, peli woman, pelo female, Kur. pell maidservant, Brah. 
patti female. 


Skt. pardga- m. pollen of a flower ; dust, Kav., Pur., etc. 
^ Ta. piracam pollen ; honey, honeycomb ; toddy ; bee. 
Te. pera honeycomb, beehive, Tu. perya a large bee. 


Skt. pice-, piccayati to squeeze, press flat, piccata- pressed 
flat, squeezed, piccita id., Susr., pich-, pichayati to press 
flat, squeeze, pichana- pressing flat, squeezing, Car. 

In Dravidian compare Kuvi (Fitzg.) pichali to milk, wring, 
Tu. pisuni to squeeze, press out, and the following forms 
in which an -r- appears : Malt, per die to be squashed as an 
overripe fruit, Tu. purncuni to squeeze as a lemon, Brah. 
prinching to squeeze (cf. Bal. prich-, pirich-). These words 


have correlates in Uralian : Zyr. piiskini auspressen, pressen, 
Voty. pytskyny driicken, auspressen, VogA. poastam pressen, 
Sz. posseti driicken, Osty. pdttwmdm id. ; Hg.facsar obtorquere, 
premere, Fi. pusertaa, Voty. pidzirtini id. In most of the 
Uralian forms an -r- appears after the affricate, while in 
Dravidian an -r- appears before it, from which it would 
seem that a transposition has taken place in one or the other 
language group. Sanskrit pice- is presumably derived from 
*pirc- by assimilation. 


Skt. picchd f. gum; slimy saliva, picchala- mfn. slimy, 
smeary, picchila- id. 

~ Ta. picin gum, exudation from certain trees ; stickiness, 
viscousness, picupicu to be sticky, glutinous, viscous, payin 
gum, glue, pacai stickiness, glue, resin, Ma. paya, paca, pasa 
gum, resin, Tu. paya id., Te. pisunu gum, resin, pisini 

With these Dravidian words Schrader (ZII iii, 93) compares 
the following Finno-ugrian words : Fi. pihka resina, gummi, 
pix ; harz, Est. pihk id., Hg. fosveny avarus, parcus, tenax, 
Cher, peskede parcum, tenacem esse. 

For the homonymous words piccha- tail, and piccha- calf 
of the leg, see BSOAS. xi, p. 347 and p. 348. 


Skt. punkha- m. the shaft or feathered part of an arrow 
(which comes in contact with the bowstring), MBh., etc. 

/ ' Ta. puruku arrowhead, Ka. piluku, pilku the lower part 
of an arrow which comes in contact with the bowstring and 
contains the feathers and shaft. 

The Skt. word is based on a Drav. form with the liquid 
assimilated ; such assimilations are found in a number of 
Skt. words derived from Dravidian (cf. unch-, no. 7 : Ta. 


Skt. puta- m.n. fold, pocket; a cup or basket or vessel 
made of leaves ; a casket, putaka- m. a vessel made of leaf, etc., 
Pa. puta- a container made of leaves, pocket, basket, Pkt. 
puda-, pudaa- ; Be. purd a straw vessel for storing grain, 
Or. Hi. purd a packet (especially of leaves to hold sweets), 
Nep. Diet. s.v. purd. 

~ Ta. puttil quiver, sheath, basket, flower-basket, Ma. 
puttil basket ; husk, pod, legume, Ka. putti a smaller* or larger 
basket made of cane, bamboo, or palmyra leaves, butti, 
butte id., Tu. putti a small round basket, pudayi a basket, 
budde a pod, legume, Te. puti a flower-basket, putika, puttika 
a small basket, botta a large cylindrical basket for storing 
grain, Kui puti a basket. 

With a variation in the radical vowel Skt. pitaka- basket, 
is derived from the same source ; cf. also Ta. pird a round 
wicker basket (Perumpdn 276, etc.). The same vowel- variation 
is found also in the homophone, Skt. pitaka- blister (cf. 
BSOAS. xi, 354). 

There is another word puta- n. in Sanskrit differing com- 
pletely from the above in meaning and etymology. It means 
' anthill ', and is found only in the cpd. pipilakaputa-, MBh. 
The Dravidian word from which it is derived appears in 
the various languages as follows: Ta. purru anthill, Ka. 
puttu, Te. putta, Kui pusi, Kuvi pud, Malt, pute id. Of these 
the Telugu form with -tt- (out of original affricate) most 
closely resembles the Sanskrit word. On the other hand, in 
another loanword from the same Dravidian source, namely 
Skt. puttika f. the white ant or termite, the Sanskrit word 
shows the same development of the internal consonant as 


Skt. pulina- m.n. a sandbank, a small island or bank in 
the middle of a river, an islet, a sandy beach, Pa. pulina-, 
pulina- n. a sandy bank or islet in the middle of a river. 

^ Ta. poril park, grove, forest, pleasure-garden ; earth, 


world; country, district, puril earth, Ma. poril watered 
ground ; flower-garden ; sandy shore ; a piece of low ground, 
Ka. puril sand, sandy shore. 

Ka. puril is traditionally regarded as a tadbhava from 
Skt. pulina- ; it cannot, however, be separated from Ta. Ma. 
poril, which makes it clear that the relationship is the other 
way round, and Sanskrit the borrower. 

These words are related to a further series of words in 
Dravidian meaning t sand, dust, ashes, etc.' : Ta. puri powder, 
dust ; sacred ashes, purti dust, puruti dust, dried earth ; 
pulverised or fine powder; dry earth, Ma. puri dust, also 
earth put to the roots of trees ; the pollen of flowers, puruti 
id., Tu. poyye sand, Tod. (Pope) purzh mud, Malt, porsi 
sweepings. These words have correlates in Uralian as follows : 
Hg. por dust, Osty. par ashes, Voty. purzitini to make dusty, 
Vog. pors, pars, etc., kehricht | Sam.O. phura sand, K. pure 
sand, sandbank. In the South Dravidian -r- has developed 
out of -rs- : cf. Ta. mam axe = Go. mars, etc. 

The form appearing in Ta. as purti (a variant of puruti) 
has developed in Ke. and Tu. to budi ashes, with assimilation 
of -r- and voicing of the initial, both frequent phenomena. 
This Ka. Tu. budi has been further adapted into Skt. as 
bhuti- f. ashes, sacred ashes, where, on account of the employ- 
ment of ashes for religious purposes, popular etymology 
easily identified the word with Skt. bhuti- f. welfare. 


Skt. pusta-, pustaka- a book (Pa. potthaka- a book ; cloth 
made of makaci fibre, Pkt. potthaka- ; Hi., etc., pothl) was 
explained by R. Gauthiot (MSL. xix, 130) as a loanword 
from Iranian : Pahl. post a skin, ModPers. pust id., from which 
the meaning ' a book written on leather ', ' a book (in general) ' 
could be derived. The weakness of this theory is that leather 
was not used for books in India, and in Iran, where it was 
so used, the word post never developed the meaning of book. * 

1 Sogd. pwstk is no doubt a Iw. from Skt. 


The materials used for writing on in India were mainly palm- 
leaf in the South, and birch-bark in the North, particularly 
in the North- West. 

In Modern Persian post, pust, besides meaning ' skin, hide ' 
means also ' bark of a tree ', and in this sense we can further 
compare Parachi piist bark (of a tree), Yidgha pisto, Sanglechi 
pdstdk id., Wakhi pist skin, hide ; bark (draxt-pist), Shughni 
post bark. In view of the fact that birch-bark was the usual 
material for books in N.W. India, it is clear that if Skt. 
pustaka- is borrowed from Iranian, it must be from the word 
used in this sense, and not in the sense of ' skin '. 

There are, however, also some Dravidian words that need 
to be taken into consideration : 

Ta. potti garment of fibres, cloth ; sheath, Ka. potti cloth, 
Te. potti cloth; bark; cf. Ta. pottu to cover, wrap, Ma. 
pottuka to cover, envelop ; with shortening of intervocalic 
-tt-, Ta. putai to cover, cloth, etc., Ma. puta a cover, an outer 
garment, putekka to wrap oneself, Ka. podake a cover, covering, 
a wrapper ; a thatch, Tu. podepuni to put on clothes, podepu 
wearing apparel, etc. 

The fact that Pa. potthaka-, Pk. pottha-, potthaa- mean 
' cloth ' as well as ' book ' tends to support the Dravidian 
etymology, since Drav. potti sheath ; bark ; cloth is connected 
with the verb pottu to cover, envelop, so that the development 
of the various specialized meanings easily comes about. The 
following words can also be grouped here : Skt. pota- m., 
potikd f. cloth, garment, Pkt. potta- a garment, pottaa- cotton 
cloth, pottiyd a piece of cloth, potti a sari ; Hi. potiya a loin- 
cloth, etc. ; Sgh. potta bark of a tree ; husk of fruit ; shell 
of testaceous animals. 

In deciding between the two alternative etymologies, 
Iranian and Dravidian, it would seem best to derive Skt. 
pustaka- and the Middle and Modern IA words meaning 
* book ' directly from Iranian post- in the sense of * bark ', 
and to refer MI pottha- cloth and the other words to a Dravidian 
source. Further, the possibility is to be taken into account 
that the Iranian word itself is derived from Dravidian, since 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. I 


it is without IE etymology, and there are other cases where 
a Dravidian etymology can be suggested for Iranian words. x 
In view of the western origin of the Dravidian languages and 
their connection with Uralian, such a state of affairs is to be 
expected. If so Drav. pott- would be assimilated out of earlier 
*post-. As all the Dravidian languages show ' prakritic ' 
tendencies of this kind, such a development is very probable. 

Skt. pusta-, pustaka- also has another sense, namely that 
of ' plastering '. In this sense we may reasonably follow 
Gundert (ZDMG. xxiii, 528) and Kittel (Kan.-Eng. Diet. 
p. xl) in comparing the Dravidian words meaning ' to smear ' : 
Ta. pucu to besmear, anoint, rub, daub, spread on, plaster ; 
sb. daubing, smearing, Ma. pucuka to smear, daub ; to white- 
wash, plaster; (with pon) to gild, puccu smearing; daub, 
coating, Ka. pusu to smear, daub, plaster, etc., Tu. pujuni 
to smear, rub, daub, apply, Te. puyu id. As Kittel points 
out Skt. pusta- corresponds to a Dravidian participial form : 
Ka. pusita that which is smeared. 

42 * 

Skt. puj-, pujayati to honour, worship, revere, respect; 
pujd f. honour, worship, adoration. 

^Ta. porm to cherish, protect, nourish; to worship, 
treat with regard, entertain (a guest) ; to praise, applaud, 
Ma. porruha to adore ; to preserve, bring up, protect. 

Ta. Ma. porru [i.e. poitru] represents an original *poccu, 
the -rr- having developed out of an original affricate. Skt. 
puj- represents a Drav. *po'j- with a weaker grade of the 
intervocalic consonant. An exact phonological parallel is 
to be found in Kui tdja to show, as compared with Ta. Ma. 
torru id. For Skt. u : Dr. o, compare Skt. kuta- peak : Ta. 
Jcotu, etc. 


Skt. bilva Aegle Marmelos, Pa. beluva, beluva, also bella, 
billa id., Pkt. bella, billa\ see Nep. Diet. s.v. bel 1 . 

1 Cf. nos. 45 and 49. 


/^ Ta. vild wood-apple, vilavu id., vellil id., Ma. vild, Ka. 
belaval, belavala, belola, belala, bela, Te. velaga id. 

The IA forms with -e- in the first syllable are not based 
on a Skt. vriddhied form bailva-, but represent Drav. forms 
with -e-. The alternation e : i is based on Drav. phonetic 
developments (Drav. St. II, BSOAS. x (1940) pp. 289-297). 


Skt. maru- m. a wilderness, sandy waste, desert ; a mountain, 
rock, MBh., etc., marudhanvan- m. desert, maruprapdta- m. 
a rocky precipice, a mountain crag, marubhumi-, marusthala-, 
etc., desert, Pa. maru desert (always combined with kantdra-), 
marumba- a kind of sand or gravel. 

^ Ta. murampu rough, hard ground, rock, mound of gravel 
or stone, murappu roughness, Ma. muram roughness, rugged- 
ness, murakkallu very strong ground, Ka. moradu a stony 
rough hillock, Tu. mura a stone quarry; laterite stone; 
stony, hard, strong, Te. moramu a pebble, gravel-stone, 
morapa stony, gravelly, morasu rough, rude. 


Skt. mastu- sour cream ; the watery part of curds, whey, 
TS., etc. ; Mar. mathd milk coagulated with its butter in it 
and churned ; the coagulum or thick residue of curds, Gu. 
matho, mattho, Si. matho, Pj. Hi. mathd, Be. mdthd | cf. Pers. 
mast sour, coagulated milk, mdsldan to coagulate (as milk), 
to congeal, Balochi mastay curds, maday to freeze, curdle, 
Pashto matar coagulated milk, Khotanese mdsta- curdled. 
amdstq, nye unfermented curds. 

/^Ta. mucar buttermilk, curds, (contracted) mor butter- 
milk, curd diluted with water, Ma. mor buttermilk, Ka. 
mosar, mosaru, masaru curds, Tu. mosaru id. ; Ka. majjige 
buttermilk, whey, Te. majjiga id., Ta. maccikai (Iw. < Te.), 
Tod. mach (Metz), maj (Rivers) buttermilk ; Te. mettu curds 
mixed with water ; Brah. maringing to curdle. 

The various IA and Iranian forms show considerable 
irregularities, a fact which is often a sign that words have 


been borrowed. In view of the striking similarity of the 
Dravidian words, it becomes highly likely that they have 
been borrowed from this source. The contracted form which 
appears in Ta. Ma. mor has also been borrowed into Skt. 
in morata, morana Susr. sour buttermilk. 


Skt. mruc-, mrocati : nimruc- to go down, set, of the sun, 
mine-, mlocati to go down, set, mlup- : upamlupta- hidden, 
concealed, abhinimlupta- = mrukta-, mlukta- upon whom 
while not doing any work or while sleeping the sun has set. | 
Cf. Av. mraocant- sich duckend. 

^ Ta. muruku to be immersed, to sink, murucu to dive, 
dip, get into, muruttu to plunge, dip in, drown, mur to submerge, 
engulf, murku to submerge, sink ; to be hidden, concealed, 
Ma. muruku to sink under water, Ka. murugu, munugu to 
go or sink under, to be immersed, dive ; set (of the sun), 
Tu. murkuni to sink, be immersed ; the sun to set, murgelu 
ducking, diving, Te. munugu to sink, plunge, dive, munucu 
to cause to sink, Go. murungdnd to dive, sink, be drowned, 
Kui munja to be immersed, submerged, Kuvi (Fitzg.) mrukhali 
to dip into, Malt, mulge to dip in, Kur. mulkhna id. 


Sanskrit has two words for ' tiger ', sdrdula- and vyaghra-, 
and, as was to be expected, neither has an Indo-European 
etymology. Of these the first can be analysed as a Dravidian 
descriptive expression, meaning ' striped skin '. The first 
element appears in Dravidian as Ka. cam a line, streak, 
Te. cam a line, streak, stripe, cdrika id. The second element 
is the common Dravidian word for skin : Ta. Ma. tol skin, 
hide, leather, Te. tolu, Ka. togal, toval, tol, Tu. tugalu, Go. Kim. 
tol id. The voicing of the initial consonant of the second 
part is automatic in such a compound ; Skt. u corresponding 
to Drav. o has parallels in kuta- and pujd. Such a descriptive 
name for the tiger arises very naturally, and as parallels we 
may quote Te. cdrala-meJc-amu tiger (mekamu < mrga-), and 


the frequent descriptive names in early Tamil poetry : variy- 
afal ANan 58, kotu-vari PNan 135.1, vari-vayam ib. 100.7, 
Jcuya-vari Tinaim 25., etc. 

The first element occurs in a number of other Skt. words : 
sdra- sdra- variegated in colours, motley, speckled, sdranga- 
sdranga- dappled, spotted ; m. a kind of spotted antelope, 
sdripatta phala chess-board, krsnasdra- krsnasdranga- spotted 
black ; m. the spotted antelope, and probably in sdrikd, 
sdrikd a kind of bird, Maina. The fluctuation between s- 
and s- is a common feature in loanwords. 

MW in defining krsnasdra- as ' chiefly black ' suggests 
a wrong etymology. Skt. sdra- (variant of sdra-) speckled 
is the second part of this word, and not sdra- essence, etc., 
which is quite a different word. This latter may also be from 
Dravidian : 

Skt. sdra- m.n. the substance or essence or marrow or 
cream or heart or essential part of anything; ingredient: 
nectar ; cream, curds ; water ; pus ; manure ; Mar. sdr 
essence, substance ; sap, pith, marrow, cream, Hi. sdr pith, 
cream, Or. sdra marrow, manure, Sgh. sara essence, cream. 

^ Ta. cam juice, sap ; toddy ; water in which aromatic 
substances are infused; pepper- water, ceru sap, juice; 
toddy, honey, treacle ; kernel, as of a coconut ; pus, Ma. 
cam sap as of a palm tree ; infusion, decoction ; broth or 
soup, Ka. cam sap, juice ; broth, sdru a relish in a liquid 
state, well-seasoned sauce, broth, pepper- water, Tu. sdru 
sap ; soup, broth, cam a kind of pepper-water, Te. ceru 
tamarind soup or broth. 

The specialised meaning ' broth ', etc., which develops in 
some of the Dravidian languages is found also in Mar. sdr 
a dilute mixture of tamarinds, mangosteins, and similar 
fruits squeezed in any pulse-decoction, or in water, with salt, 
asafoetida, etc. 

The other word for tiger in Sanskrit, vydghrd- bears a 
strong resemblance to some Drav. words with the same 
meaning Ta. venkai tiger, Ma. venna, Te. vegi id., which 
can hardly be accidental. The Skt. word has probably been 


borrowed from Dravidian, and altered by popular etymology 
(as if from vy-d-ghrd-). From Skt. the word has travelled 
westwards : Pers. babr, Arm. $agr (Uhlenbeck, Worterb. s.v.). 
Whether there is any connection with the words for * cat ' 
(Ta. veruku, Ka. berku, Go. warkar, Malt, berge, Kur. berkhd : 
cf. E. H. Tuttle, Dravidian Developments p. 16) is a question 
that can be left for the time being. 


Skt. surpa- n. a winnowing basket or fan, VS., etc. 

~Ta. turru to spread, strew; to winnow, Ma. turruka 
to scatter; to fan and winnow grain, Ka. turn to drive 
off the chaff from grain by means of the wind, to winnow, 
turuvike winnowing, Tu. tupu winnowing, as grain, tupuni 
to winnow, fan, Te. turpidi winnowing, turpettu to winnow, 
Kui sirpa to shake out, sprinkle. 

South Dravidian t- here represents an original sibilant, 
as frequently (see BSOAS. xi (1944) p. 339, Ta. tuppu, etc. ; 
ibid. p. 349, Ta. tur, etc.). 


Skt. sikatd f. sand, VS., etc., has the following cognates 
in Iranian : OPers. 6ikd sand, gravel (Benveniste, BSL 30, 60), 
Sogd. sykth sand (Benveniste, JRAS. 1933, p. 43), Pashto 
sdga sand, Orm. sag e , Par. sdyd, Mj. sug y a Yd. sigioh id., 
Bal. six sand, barren land, Oss. sv/U, sigit, etc., earth, soil 
(Morgenstierne, EVP. p. 73, IIFL. ii, 245). The irregularity 
in the correspondence of the initial in Indo- Aryan and Iranian 
led Morgenstierne to regard the eastern Iranian words as 
borrowed from IA, while Benveniste was inclined to regard 
the Sanskrit word as borrowed from Iranian. The irregularity, 
however, is not confined to the correspondence between 
Indo-aryan and Iranian. Morgenstierne (EVP. 73) remarks 
that ' in the Dard languages we find a bewildering variety 
of forms which seem to be derived from, or in some way 
associated with sikatd\ and quotes the following forms : 
E. Pash. sd, sed, Kashm. sekh, Burush. (Iw ?) ' soh* f., W. Pash. 


siyel, selm., Shina sigal f., Chiliss, Gowro sigil, Torw. sigulm., 
Baskarik sugut f. ; Khow. suyur, Kati cu m., Waig. sd, 
Ashk. sora. As phonetic irregularity is often a sign that a 
word has been borrowed from some non-Aryan source, it is 
worth while comparing the following Dravidian words meaning 
' sand ' : 

Ka. usiku, usigu, usige, usuku, usuvu, etc., sand, Te. isuka, 
isumu sand, esalu id., Go. (Maria) usakd sand. The Dravidian 
words here appear to have developed a prothetic vowel when 
compared with the Indo-Iranian forms. This is supported 
by a comparison with Finno-ugrian, since these words have 
a fairly obvious cognate in Fi. hiekka sand (h- < s-). Such 
prothesis is not usual before sibilants in Dravidian, but it 
must be remembered that several sibilants (usually represented 
by s, s, and s in Finno-ugrian) have fallen together in 
Dravidian, and there may have been such a tendency before 
the comparatively rare s- which is here attested by Finno- 
ugrian. The fact that the initial vowel fluctuates between u- 
and i- in Kanarese and Telugu also points in this direction. 


Skt. hintdla- m. The marshy date tree, Phoenix paludosa, 
Hariv., etc. 

^Ta. intu date-palm, mcu, iccam-panai id. Ma. itta, 
ittal Phoenix dactylifera, Ka. leal, Icil the wild date tree, 
Phoenix silvestris, Tu. mcilu, icily, the wild date tree, Te. ita 
the wild date-tree, %du, idddu id., Kui sita a small date. 

An initial sibilant is often lost in South Dravidian, and 
it is clear from the Kui form that it has happened here. 
An intermediate stage was probably h-, such as we find 
now in Kuvi and the Maria dialects of Gondi, and this is 
reflected in Skt. hintdld-. An original s- is preserved in Pkt. 
sindi wild-date. An initial k- in Kur. kindd date-palm is 
difficult to account for, but it is worth while noticing that 
Geiger (Singh. Gramm. 39.2) observes a similar variation in 
Singhalese between kitul n. of a palm tree, alternating with 
hitul = Pa. hintdla-. 


The Skt. word appears to have been influenced in form 
by tola- palmyra palm (Pkt. also tdda-), which is itself a loan- 
word from Dravidian: Ka. tar Palmyra tree, Borassus 
flabelliformis, Te. tddu id. (Kitt. no. 101). 

Alphabetical list of Sanskrit words : agara- 31, atta- attala- 1, 
addana- 1, adhara- 2, alasa- 3, alga- 4, arabhata- i 5, asphal- 21, 
ukha- a 6, unch- 7, kanka- 8, kara- 9, karatu- karetu- 8, 
karota- i 10, karkara- 18, karkaratuka- karkaretu- 8, karkasa- 
18, kallola- 3, kavaka- 11, kavaca- 11, kavara- i 12, kavala- 
13, kut- kuti- kutila- 15, kuta- kuti- I house 15, kuta- pot 15, 
kutt- 15, kulattha- 14, kuta- 15, kurpara- 16, kota- 15, 
koti- 15, kaurukuca 17, krakaca- 18, khand- khanda- 19, 
khara- kharu- 18, kharapata- 20, goni 11, capeta- a 21, 
carpata- 21, cipata- cipita- 21, cikkana- 22, cikkhalla- 22, 
cira- 23, civara- 23, cela- 23, cumb- 24, tata- 25, tadaga- 25, 
taranga- 26, tarala- 27, talina- 28, tala- 50, tubara- 29, tubari 
ika 29, dadru- 30, nagara- 31, mvra- 32, pan- pana- 33, 
panda, etc., 34, paraga- 35, pice- piccata- pich- 36, piccha 
picchala- ila- 37, pitaka- 39, punkha- 38, puta- 39, puttika 39, 
pulina- 40, pusta(ka-) 41, puj- 42, pota- 41, potika 41, bilva- 43, 
bhuti- 40, maru- 44, mastu- 45, morata- morana- 45, mruc- 
mluc- 46, lahari- 3, vici- 27, vlj- vyaj- 26, vyaghra- 47, sara- 
sara- 47, saranga- saranga- 47, sardula- 47, s*ila- 7, surpa- 48, 
sara- 47, sikata 49, hintala- 50. 




THE best statement of the claims and qualities of Basic 
English is to be found in Dr. I. A. Richards' Basic English 
and its Uses (London, 1943). In Chapter IV of this work 
it is asserted that Basic aims (1) at providing a minimum 
secondary world language (a * supra-national ' language) and 
(2) at providing an improved introductory course for foreign 
learners leading into General English. Now it is possible to 
hold that Basic is more suitable for the one purpose than for 
the other. Here it is the first claim which is chiefly to be 
examined. Criticisms under that head do not necessarily 
invalidate the claim that Basic is a suitable approach to 
normal English. It must, however, be pointed out that Basic 
is but one of several carefully thought out approaches and 
that before its claim to be the best is accepted, certain data 
must be considered. 

Dr. Richards' postulates for a supra-national language are 
sound enough. It must, as he says, come into use freely as 
a general convenience under the urge of the everyday motives 
of mankind. It must carry no implications of intellectual, 
technological or other domination. It must remain a purely 
auxiliary language, for no one should be encouraged or 
compelled to give up his native language. Finally, the learning 
and use of the common language should be symbolic of the 
learner's participation in the common human political effort. 

It seems to the present author that these postulates are 
fulfilled by a neutral (i.e. non-ethnic), ' constructed ' language 
better than by one already used by a nation or group of 
nations. Such a language may therefore serve as a final 
measuring rod in our scrutiny of the claims of Basic. 

First it may be asked why Mr. Richards thinks that his 
postulates militate in favour of English. His chief arguments 


are the ease with which English can be learnt by foreigners 
in general, the value of its literature, the numerical superiority 
of its users, its adoption by the largest number of foreign 
educational systems, its historic function as a bridge between 
peoples, and its adaptability to film, radio, and gramophone. 
He realizes that Spanish has a far better system of spelling, 
but holds that this is offset by the complexity of its verbal 
conjugation. It is of interest to note that Basic fights shy 
even of the English verb, and if that were the chief objection 
to Spanish the verb might in theory at least be ' stream- 
lined ' as in some of the creolized forms of Spanish like the 
Papiamento of Curasao (for Romance Creole languages, 
cf. H. Schuchardt, Zeitschr. fur roman. Phil. XIII). The 
argument from English literature depends for its cogency 
on the settlement of a prior problem, namely whether Basic 
is a good introduction to literary English. In regard to the 
numbers of users of English statistical guesses are misleading 
for there are many grades of proficiency and variations in 
pronunciation and usage in the various colonies and depen- 
dencies. The growing encouragement of English studies in 
foreign schools is to the point, but so far little instruction 
has been given with Basic. Moreover those English studies 
are intended to fit foreign students for communication with 
English speakers and writers, whereas a supra-national 
language must be usable by foreigners in communication 
with foreigners as well as with the English. Some data are 
already available for showing what modifications Basic would 
undergo in the mouths and thoughts of foreign speakers 
(see below). For that matter the style and idiom encountered 
in dissertations written by foreigners in what is meant to 
be normal literary English leave the impression that con- 
siderable modifications and distortions are inevitable, even 
when the norms of standard English are inculcated. Many 
who have attended conferences in which foreigners have 
presented papers in English, will have recollections of such 
misuses as inconsequent for inconsistent, inconscient for 
unconscious, control for check and of the overuse of pedagogic, etc. 


As to the historic function of English its continuance depends 
upon the kind of role this country will assume after the war, 
but the foreigner may well object to having a mere extract 
of English imposed on him from without in fact he may 
deeply resent being put off with a mere surrogate or minimum 
form, unless he is convinced of the value of Basic as a 
preparatory study for normal English. This has been 
shown by a resolution against Basic English adopted by the 
Council of Allied Educational bodies in exile in April, 1944. 
The argument from the widespread diffusion of English in 
film and radio is of more value, but once again one for the 
fostering of standard English rather than of Basic. 

As the sounds and spelling of normal English are retained, 
a linguistic analysis of Basic English had better begin with 
its vocabulary, which is its central feature. 

The Basic vocabulary is stated to consist of 850 ' words ' 
to which are added 50 ' international words ' and the names 
of numerals, months, titles, etc. The limit of 850 is determined 
by the practical consideration that that is the maximum 
number which can be printed conveniently on a half sheet of 
business note-paper. Among the basic words inflected forms 
like gave, given or these, those or me, my do not count as separate 
items, j The following suffixes are admissible to form derived 
words "(likewise not counted separately) : -er (agent, with 
special mention of actor, sailor), -ing (action or participial 
adjection), -ed (past participle, but not past tense), -ly 
(adverbs). Opposites may be expressed by the prefix un-. 
How far these affixes are free to form new words will be 
discussed below. 

The 850 basic * words * comprise : A Operators (100) 
including (1) a group of 18 verbs for irreducibly simple acts 
(come, go, get, give, take, put, keep, let, make, be, seem, have, 
do, may, will and the ' soi-disant ' luxuries say, see, send) ; 
(2) directives, especially prepositions (the basic local meanings 
being shown by an excellent figure) ; (3) pronominals. B The 
bulk of the appelative terms including (1) 600 names of 
things and processes, and (2) 150 names of qualities with 


some of their opposites. In the list the appellatives under 
B (i) are subdivided into 400 ' general ' and 200 picturable 
things, but it is not clear why bread, butter, milk, rice, sugar, 
wine come under ' general ', but cake, cheese, orange and 
potato under the ' picturables '. 

A closer inspection of the B portion of the vocabulary 
shows that there has been careful planning. It includes 
names of kinship (but not wife, husband, uncle, aunt, nephew, 
niece), parts of the body and of plants, collectivities (army, 
nation, committee), food and drink (with tea and coffee, but 
not cocoa!), articles of clothing, common objects (basket, 
bucket, curtain, cushion, door, screw, table, etc.), terms used 
for describing the world (end, middle, top, edge, colour, size, 
form, change, weight, measure, cause, effect; land, sea, river, 
mountain), and actions, states, etc. (in the substantival form, 
e.g. amusement, answer, approval, argument, debt, decision, 
birth, death, etc.). The quality- words include dimensions 
(great /small, wide /narrow, long /short), colours, temperatures, 
states (boiling, hanging; cut, open, shut), feelings (angry, 
tired), and logical status (general, special, right, wrong, possible, 
probable, certain). 

Among the chief eliminations may be noted the following : 
(1) the modal auxiliaries can /could, shall /should, must /ought, 
in their various functions, can being replaced by the various 
tenses and moods of be able, shall (future) by will, shall 
(mandatory or promissory) by am to -\- infinitive, should 
(must, ought) by / am to, have to in various tenses, and by 
a phrase like it is necessary for me to . . . ; (2) many common 
verbs are replaced by phrases with the noun, e.g. know by 
have knowledge, lose by have a loss, sit by take a seat, think by 
give thought, choose by make a selection, etc. (see below). 
There is no place in the vocabulary for understand, remember, 
forget, show, ask, buy, sell, carry, catch, obey, quarrel, find, 
want, promise and multitudes of other common verbs ; (3) no 
provision is made for the religious vocabulary (except in 
the special list for the Basic New Testament) so Basic lacks 
God, heaven, pray a lack paralleled further by that of such 


legal terms as court, accuse, confess, condemn, jury and words 
which a war-correspondent would need like battle, soldier, 
enemy, shoot. 

When we turn to pronunciation and orthography we soon 
discover that Basic English retains many features of standard 
English which those who have taught English to foreigners 
know to be peculiarly difficult even for those of Scandinavian 
and Dutch nationality who pick up English most readily. 
As we shall see difficulties inherent in English are by no means 
confined to pronunciation and orthography. 

The following English sounds offer stumbling blocks to 
many foreigners : (a) the consonants [3] and [}?], e.g. Basic 
the, this, these, that, those, then, there; thin, thing, think, 
north, south, etc. ; [w] and wh[w], e.g. which, what, when, 
where, why ; kw, e.g. quality, question, quiet ; intervocalic r 
in very ; voiced finals like [g] in bag, pig, leg, dog or [d] in good, 
food, [z] in disease, as, is and [dz] in bridge, edge. 

(b) Apart from the glide pronunciation in Southern English 
of the vowels in day, see, no and do there are peculiar difficulties 
with English [ae] in act, bag, apple ; (A) in but, cut, cup, dust ; 
[5] in chalk, all ; [o] in earth, birth, work, word, first, dirty ; 
[iii] in use, you, value. 

The stress accent in English often falls on a syllable different 
from that in most European languages so that international 
words are frequently mispronounced in English by foreigners, 
e.g. balance, committee, current, damage, existence, history, 
humour, insurance, minute, record, society, structure, tendency 
all Basic words. 

Even more serious than these difficulties of pronuncation 
is the chaotic character of English spelling of which the 
following (Basic) examples are typical : (a) silent letters, 
e.g. who, answer, business, doubt, knowledge ; (b) a multiplicity 
of sounds for the same letter(s), e.g. for the letter a in baby, 
cat, war, bath, wash, about and for the group gh in cough, 
laugh, enough, daughter, light, weight, plough, though ; (c) a 
still more bewildering multiplicity of written symbols for 
the same sound (phoneme), e.g. for [i:] in he, keep, heat, key, 


field, receipt, machine and for [i] in fish, busy, building ; 
(d) doubling of letters in writing in accordance with etymology, 
but without any doubling or lengthening in speech, a feature 
difficult for Spaniards and Portuguese, e.g. addition, apparatus, 
approval, attack, committee, current, suggestion. 

A few irregularities of accidence are kept in Basic, e.g. the 
plural of the noun (feet, teeth, men, women, knives, leaves, 
selves; sheep, fish; news as a singular), comparison of 
adjectives (better, best ; worse, worst), formation of adverbs 
(well ; specified exceptions to the rule of adding -ly such as 
short, like, small), comparison of adverbs (farther, farthest ; 
less, least ; more, most ; better, best). Above all Basic preserves 
a hard core of irregular forms in the eighteen verbs comprising 
the ' operators ', e.g. go/went/gone, come/came, take/took/ 
taken, be/am/is/are/was/were/been, etc. This could not be 
avoided if the conjugated verb apart from these was to 
be totally eliminated and replaced by a verbal phrase. How- 
ever, this process of elimination involves a serious interference 
with the normal speech-habits of hundreds of millions of 
people inside and outside the English-speaking communities. 
A possible way of surmounting the difficulty would have been 
to revive the use of did to form the past tense of a verb in 
a positive statement, thus generalizing from its use with 
a negative / did not do and as an interrogative did I do? 

In word-formation it is hazardous to set up rules if the 
products are to remain within the bounds of standard English. 
In the book Basic English the author informs us that 300 
of the nouns given in a list under ' general names ' and 
* picturable things ' form derivatives with -er to indicate the 
' thing or person performing operation ' and -ing for the 
operation itself. In as far as such a rule is applied without 
reference to current usage in Standard English it will result 
in clother for clothier, coaler for collier, journeyer for traveller, etc. 
If the foreigner affixes -er and forms backer, joiner, turner, 
twister, waster his products may not be taken in the literal 
sense in which he intends them. He will have to be warned 
not to add any affix to cook, guide, or judge. If a German, 


he must be specifically told not to ' caique ' English words 
on Glaser, Musiker, Sdnger and not to take in a personal 
sense the words cooker, duster (' Staubtuch '), folder 
(' Prospekt '), heater (' Heizapparat ', not ' Heizer '), roller 
(not Roller which is ' scooter '), rubber (' Gummi '), washer 
(' Dichtungsring '), etc. Similar sets of difficulties confront 
the foreigner attempting to form compounds in English 
where they are much more restricted by convention than in 
other Germanic languages. Mr. Ogden uses quite legitimately 
mother-tongue and word-group (cf. Muttersprache, Wortgruppe), 
but he and other Basic writers form joining-sign ' hyphen ', 
hand-part ' handle ', grain-cutting ( harvest ', grain-stems 
' stalks ', vine-garden, etc. In Basic English p. 34 appear 
newspaper, outhouse and sundown. All three might be under- 
stood in a suitable context, but what foreigner would be likely 
to form such words spontaneously ? Mr. Ogden in an article 
in Picture Post (November, 1943) goes still further, when he 
uses as though they were transparent compounds note-paper, 
outlook and outline. Letter-paper would be clearer to the 
foreigner, for note-paper suggests taking notes. Outlook 
might be confused by the German with look-out owing to 
Ausguck. Outline would be less comprehensible than the 
international contour. Similar criticisms may be raised against 
the Basic headway, upright, offspring, undertake, overlook, 
somewhat. In Basic English p. 34 the author admits that the 
meaning of the following compounds is not ' self-evident ' : 
away, become, cupboard, however, inside, to-day, well-off, 
without, but does not count them as extra items. How does 
the foreigner know that away is not a coalescence of the 
indefinite article with way ? This is surely a case where the 
diachronistic point of view should be kept quite distinct from 
the synchronistic. To assume historical knowledge of a 
language not yet learnt is absurd. 

The English device much used by Basic writers of 
transferring from one part of speech to another, e.g. nouns to 
verbal forms by the addition of -ing and -ed, has unsuspected 
dangers for the foreigner. It is doubtful whether he would 


form spontaneously pasted on, corded, stationed at. Even 
a form like pleasing has no counterpart (gefallend) in German 
and has a meaning not co-terminous with Fr. plaisant. 

The extent to which metaphorical or figurative uses of 
words should be admitted in an international auxiliary language 
constitutes a difficult problem which still awaits full investiga- 
tion. What is needed is a survey of the international diffusion 
of metaphors belonging to specific domains, e.g. parts of 
body (foot of the mountain, leg of the table, head waters, etc.). 
Basic often adopts English extensions of function not shared 
by continental languages, e.g. account (1) ' bill ', (2) ' narrative ' 
(Fr. compte/conte ; Ger. Rechnung/Erzdhlung), note (1) ' tone ', 
(2) ' message ', (3) ' annotation ' (Ger. Ton/ Brief /Notiz), order 
(1) * command ', (2) ' arrangement ' (Ger. BefeM/Ordnung), etc. 
Still more startling is the use of watch for look at/timepiece 
and ring for both what is worn on the finger and for sounding 
a bell, watch and ring each being counted as a single word. 

On pp. 72 f. of Basic English a list is given of 300 words 
said to have a prima facie claim to internationality and hence 
to inclusion as additional items. The words under A comprise 
absinth, academy, academic, accumulator, adieu, alphabet, 
alpha, aluminium, ampere, ammonia, apostrophe, aristocracy, 
asbestos, atlas, atmosphere, atom in the main specific terms 
which could not be replaced by any periphrases. However, 
there are large numbers of non-Basic international words com- 
mon not only to English and the Romanic languages, but also 
to German and Russian, e.g. absolute, address, advocate, agent, 
appetite, arrest, author, autonomy, and it is not easy to discern 
any principle by which they should be excluded. This is 
quite apart from those undisclosed assets of the international 
classical vocabulary that we find in oculist (ocular), manual, 
dentist, mordant, audience, library, etc. 

On the other hand Basic retains the many functions of the 
peculiarly English ' passe-partout ' word get. Thus in the 
article in Picture Post (November, 1943) Mr. Ogden uses get 
as follows : (1) obtain ' in get pleasure from ; (2) * cause to 
be ' in get his essay printed ; (3) * become ' in get ready, get 


tired ; (4) ' proceed, move ' in get a jump in front of. The 
matter is further complicated by the existence of become 
in Basic, for Mr. Ogden uses he became Master of Trinity 
and by the use of go and turn in the sense of ' become ' as 
well as by Mr. Ogden's phrase it came to be used. 

The virtual elimination of the simple verb in favour of the 
verb-noun phrase makes heavy demands on the ingenuity 
of the English user and still heavier on the memorizing 
powers of the foreigner. It is the lack of the verb the dynamic 
centre of the sentence in most languages which two of the 
chief critics of Basic, Sir A. Quiller-Couch in The Times Lit. 
Suppt., 30th September, 1944, and Mr. G. M. Young in Soc. 
Pure English Tract no. 62 have deplored. They pillory the 
intolerable clumsiness of / have knowledge that you have love 
for me compared with / know that you love me. Then we may 
look at the matter more from the standpoint of the foreign 
learner. There are two large classes of phrases he would have 
to assimilate. The first consists of one of the admitted 
operators -f adverbial particle, e.g. put in, go out, take down. 
In their literal application these offer no difficulty. English 
shares this phrase-type with German (separable verbs), 
Dutch, Norse, Finnish, etc., and the Romanic languages are 
not altogether devoid of such constructions. They can 
economize the learner's time in so far as they can replace 
in clear contexts and situations a whole array of specific verbs, 
e.g. put in for insert, sow, implant, introduce, inject, etc. The 
difficulty arises when they are idiomatic, i.e. not susceptible 
of direct analysis. A good example is afforded by put up. 
Probably put up a person for a society might just pass muster 
in so far as German says ich stelle den Kandidaten auf, but 
who could without some previous knowledge of English 
understand put up someone in one's house or put up with him ? 
Yet the last occurs in a definition s.v. tolerate in the General 
Basic English Dictionary, stated on the title-page to be 
' under the direction of G. K. Ogden '. The second type of 
phrases is characterized by verb -f noun-object (or preposition 
and noun). It is true that spoken English in particular 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. K 


abounds in such phrases. That some are rather subtly nuanced 
will be evident from a careful scrutiny by an Englishman of 
the following sets : have a talk/have words ; have a look/take 
a look ; have a game/make a game ; have a good tea/make 
a good tea/take tea/make tea ; put a question, put a stop to ; 
give birth, give pain ; give trouble /make trouble/take trouble, etc. 
Basic writers are forced to make a lavish use of this device. 
Thus the translation of the New Testament has give teaching 
for teach, give hearing for hear, go in fear of for fear. The use 
of such phrases is not so plainsailing for the foreigner as it 
looks to the Englishman. Thus when English says have a 
fall or a game, French says faire une chute, faire une partie, 
and when the Englishman gives pain, the Frenchman uses 
faire mal. Basic writers are prone to use that characteristic 
Anglicism give a paper whereas French says faire une conference 
and German einen Vortrag halten. One can imagine the 
perplexity of the Chinese or Japanese when they find that 
they can put a question, but not give or make it (in spite of 
French), and still more when they find that after laboriously 
learning put a question, they cannot put an answer, but make it. 
It is not too much to say that the arbitrary nature of the 
linguistic conventions in an ethnic language unfit the latter 
for use as an international auxiliary language. 

In Syntax the author of Basic has not found it possible to 
discard constructional patterns of Standard English which 
differ markedly from prevalent continental norms. Experience 
of teaching foreigners shows that the following English 
constructions are not easily assimilated : 

(1) The use of the articles, e.g. its omission with abstracts 
like honesty or virtue, and the use of a possessive in phrases 
like wash my hands where French and German favour dative 
of pronoun and definite article before the part of the body. 
On the whole problem, cf. P. Christopherson, The Articles 
a Study of their Theory and Use in English (Copenhagen 
1939) and his bibliography. 

(2) The distinction between the ' terminate ' and the 
' progressive ' aspects of the verb, e.g. / go/am going, do you 


go /are you going, etc., as in do you go to school (now, to-day, 
every day, of a Saturday) I/are you going to school (now, to-day, 
every day, this week, next Saturday) ? Cf. Ph. Aronstein, 
' Die periphrastische Form im Englischen ' (Anglia xlii, 
pp. 1-84) and Jacob van der Laan, An Enquiry upon a 
Psychological Basis into the Periphrastic Forms in Late Modern 
English (Amsterdam thesis 1922). Still subtler is the nuance 
of difference between will you go to school to-day \/will you 
be going to school to-day ? Cf. H. Koziol, Engl. Studien Ixxi, 
p. 385. 

(3) The perfect tense the functions of which in English 
contrast sharply with those in French and German in spite 
of some overlaps. English says / have been here a week when 
French prefers je suis id depuis une semaine and German 
ich bin seit acht Tagen hier. 

(4) The use of the -ing form sometimes in competition with 
the infinitive preceded by to, e.g. like to go/like going. Many 
European languages use an infinitive with preposition where 
English uses -ing, e.g. instead of going /anstatt zu gehen, etc. 
On the other hand when the subject of -ing is not that of the 
finite verb, e.g. instead of his going (I went myself), many 
European languages would render the -ing phrase by a that- 
clause, e.g. anstatt dasz. 

(5) Basic writers make frequent use of the ' retained object ' 
(cf. E. Kruisinga in Engl. Studies ix, 38), e.g. only these have 
been made use of and these words have been given no more space. 
Equally difficult for many foreigners is the post-posited 
particle in this has been gone into very fully and the somewhat 
unusual English locution in Basic words which are now come 
across only in the works of early writers. 

(6) The peculiarly English construction with for -f- regime 
-j- infinitive, e.g. for him to go would be wrong (often rendered 
by a conditional sentence in other languages). An actual 
example from Basic is making it possible for a somewhat wide 
range of ideas to be covered. 

(7) Many foreigners will be taken aback by the contact- 
clause (Jespersen's term), i.e. parataxis with omission of 


that in indirect statement and with the omission of the relative 
pronoun when object of a verb, e.g. the man I saw. The first 
is paralleled in most of the Germanic languages, but the 
second only in Scandinavian languages, which even use the 
same pattern as English in the man I came with or the man 
I gave it to. 

(8) English word-order follows conventions notably different 
from most of the other Germanic languages and in some 
cases even from French. On the other hand it has not the 
freedom of Eussian, cf. S. C. Boyanus and N. B. Jopson, 
Spoken Russian p. 2, 15. It is on the whole uncontinental 
to say / always do it, he never goes there, cf . Fr. il lefait toujours, 
Ger. er tut es immer, etc. 

Such syntactical features as these show that not only Basic, 
but even normal English is considerably handicapped as an 
international language in so far as English represents an 
' aberrant ' type. This aberrancy of English is mentioned 
in a posthumous article on ' Grammatical Categories ' by 
Benjamin Lee Whorf in Language xxi (1945), p. 1, when he 
says, ' English, which hardly less than some American Indian 
languages is off the pattern of general Indo-European.' 

There are not only syntactical conventions, but also stylistic 
ones. Much that is written in Basic shows a mixture of 
incongruous styles. Even in the New Testament a colloquial 
phrase like he got into a ship occurs in close proximity to 
literary phrases like give teaching and go in fear. To prevent 
confusion between piece and peace the word bit is used and 
often intrudes into passages where it jars. Still worse are 
the phrases scattered about by Mr. Ogden like do the trick 
and put ideas across. The highly international autumn is 
omitted as fall is used in the American way and even the 
ubiquitous film and cinema are replaced by motion-picture. 
Two connected specimens of Basic English will suffice to 
illustrate the stylistic effects of a highly restricted vocabulary 
in the absence of marked incongruity : 

(a) A meeting took place at which the public took a different 


point of view from the controlling body on the accounts in 

(6) What story the other man gave is not on record, but 
at any rate he went free, and my friend was sent to prison. 
It is true he was the worse for drink, but it was to his credit 
that he had no designs on her money. 

A translation of either passage into French and German 
would reveal a remarkably high percentage of peculiarly 
English idioms, e.g. take place, on record, at any rate, go free, 
worse for drink, etc. 

A few specimens of Basic written by foreigners will show 
that the fears expressed in the introduction to this analysis 
are not wholly unfounded. The following occur in a single 
number of a journal for the instruction of Argentine students, 
Basic English-Ingles Basico. Revista mensual ilustrada (Ano I, 
num. 3, Jan. 1944) : (p. 3) From this historic building of the 
old Corporation of the town of Buenos Aires, paternal home 
of the greatest past decisions, I do a talk for the Argentine 
nation, in reason of being to-day the America's day. As an 
exception I come to put an end to the silence of this house 
many times great . . . (Translation of a speech by General 
Farrell on 14th April, 1943). 

(p. 4) It was in 1812, when the Argentine Government gave 
orders to General Belgrano for make attempts to keep from 
attacks the edges of Parana River . . . (article The Argentine 

(p. 21) A meeting takes place in the high chief military's 
house and the helper captain gives orders to the young military 
man who is the watcher at the door : ' Over all things do not 
let any person come in whithout (sic) giving you the stick 
first, etc.' (from a series of jokes under the heading Give a 
smile, please !). 

(p. 22) The new female servant gives a look at the dependent 
with an (sic) Greta Garbo's air, and says : ' Good morning, 
young man ! Y have a feeling of regret at troubling you.' 
' No, it is not trouble to me, young woman. What is your 
need ? etc.' (ibid.). 


These are a few samples from a large number of solecisms. 
Their significance lies in the fact that each has obviously 
been written by a foreigner who has made a pretty thorough 
study of Basic and composed in it spontaneously, away from 
the supervision of an English corrector. The specimens 
quoted may thus be taken as pure cultures of foreign Basic. 

Having analysed some of the characteristics of Basic 
English from the point of view of its fitness to become the 
auxiliary international language of the world, we may profitably 
ask ourselves what advantages if any a constructed neutral 
language such as Esperanto, Ido, Occidental, Novial, or 
Mondial has to offer the users in comparison with Basic or 
indeed Standard English. Among the chief advantages the 
following are worth close consideration : 

(1) A system of phonology readily mastered by the vast 
majority of non-English speakers, preferably with pure 
vowels near the standard phonetic positions (a, e, i, o, u) 
without significant distinction of quality between ' close ' 
and ' open ' (one phoneme only for o, one for e) and without 
front-rounded vowels or the English low-front [ae] or non- 
rounded [A] and [a:]. There need be no []?] or [5] and no 
heavy consonantal clusters. Stress could be brought under 
a simple rule consistently applied, e.g. like the initial stress 
in Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian, Latvian, Czech and penulti- 
mate in Welsh and Polish. 

(2) A rationalized system of orthography in which each 
letter or letter-group is used regularly and consistently to 
designate each phoneme. A high degree of rationalization 
has already been attained in Finnish, Norwegian, Italian, 
Spanish and German in sharp contrast with English and 

(3) A system of accidence with the bare minimum of 
inflexions and one even simpler than English in having one 
model conjugation for all verbs. 

(4) A system of word-building by affix and composition 
(or grouping) of such a kind that the meaning of the derivate 
or composite word is the resultant of a combination of the 


meanings of the separate components whether bound or free. 
Some languages make considerable use of unhampered 
suffixation, e.g. Finnish which by means of a collective -sto 
forms laivasto ' fleet ' (laiva ( ship '), sanasto ' glossary ' 
(sana ' word '), hermosto ' nervous system ', etc. It is easy 
to imagine a place-suffix in an international language could 
enable a speaker to deal with a series like English playing- 
field, golf-links, tennis-court, cricket-ground, eating-house, cafe, 
etc., and a container-suffix with a series like salt-cellar, 
pepper-pot, sugar-basin, soup-tureen, salad-bowl, etc. 

(5) Syntactical constructions could be made to conform 
to common continental usage rather than the aberrant 
procedure of English, Celtic, and the Northern languages. 

(6) The development of a style or of styles in an international 
language would depend upon the experiences of its users and 
upon the adoption of the language by competent craftsmen, 
but it could attain a large measure of uniformity and refrain 
from jarring the sensitive listener or reader. 

It does not lie within the scope of this linguistic analysis 
of Basic to pronounce judgment on its claims to be a good 
means of approach to the full standard language. Where 
Basic texts have been introduced into English schools for 
the instruction of English pupils, it is for the teachers to say 
to what extent Basic helps or hinders progress in speaking 
and writing and in stylistic appreciation. Where Basic has 
been used in foreign countries in support of English teaching, 
there is some evidence that it has not proved satisfactory 
(cf. letter to The Listener, 2nd December, 1943, from Mr. J. C. 
Powell-Price late Director of Public Instruction United 
Provinces, India stating that the experimental courses in 
Basic given at the Government Training College at Allahabad 
had been discontinued as ' results have not borne out the 
claims made for Basic English '). In any case as a preparation 
for standard English Basic would require to be compared 
carefully with other projects devised with this aim, e.g. 
Mr. Harold Palmer's Thousand Word English (London 1937) 
with adaptations of Jules Verne, etc., and Dr. Michael West's 


New Method English Dictionary (London 1935) in which 
Mr. J. G. Endicott collaborated. Mr. Palmer, as adviser to 
the Japanese authorities in Tokyo, had exceptional 
opportunities of gauging the difficulties inherent in English. 
His aim is to build up a reading vocabulary for the early 
stages so that interesting narratives can be presented to the 
pupil in simple, but normal English. Dr. West set forth his 
method of selecting a core of essential English in Bulletin IV 
of the Department of Educational Research in the Ontario 
College of Education, University of Ontario. His preoccupation 
with the subject of vocabulary restriction was due to his 
experience as an inspector of schools in India. The New Method 
Dictionary contains 24,000 items (18,000 words, 6,000 idioms) 
which are defined by a definition- vocabulary of 1,490 words. 
A couple of definitions will show what can be achieved within 
that compass : 

insulin a medicine obtained from certain parts of sheep 
which helps the body to use the sugar which is eaten and 
prevents those who have too much sugar in the blood 
from dying. 

fortitude that courage and self-control which makes one 
able to suffer pain without complaining and to meet danger 

For a concise but illuminating statement of principles 
reference may be made to Dr. West's article * Vocabulary 
Selection ' in the Year Book of Education 1940, pp. 277-293. 
It is to be hoped that no further attempts will be made to 
promote Basic in our own or in foreign schools until the 
issues raised in that article are settled. 


Conspectus : 

The first part of compounds (pp. 137-142). 

Compound vowel y (pp. 138 sq.). 

Compound vowel ' (pp. 139-142). 
The ending of compounds (pp. 142-146). 

No suffix (pp. 142-144). 

Suffix -aka- (pp. 144 sq.). 

Other suffix (pp. 145 sq.). . 
Main types of compounds in Sogdian (pp. 147 sqq.). 


No compound vowel is found as a rule in Sogdian, the first 
part of compounds consisting of the pure stem without 

Compare, with heavy stems, the compound samdhi in Man. 
Sfi'mbn < Av. ddmano . padrii- ( 449), S. knSfir " town- 
gate " < kand-Svar- ( 455), Man. 'ysktyh " harem " < inc-kate 
( 259), or the single spelling of originally double consonants 
in Man. nymyS " south " < nem-med, Chr. ynd'qry " evil- 
doer " < yanddk-kare ( 81, 3), B. 'rkrwn'y " of action, 
samskrta ", cf. ST ii, s.v., < ark "work" -f- krwn "acting" 
(on which see Henning, Sogdica, p. 37 on 16) ; with light 
stems, the loss of t in Chr. tryz'y " oppressed " < Man. 
tryt-z'yy ( 454), qsqnty " destroyed " < S. kt-sknt'k ( 462), 
dsprtr " towel " < Sast-partar ( 481), the assimilation in 
B. firzw'n'y "long-lived" < w r z- (< brz-) + zwane ( 458), 
the spelling in two words of B. sw/3t yws " having pierced 
ears " SCE 89. 

Attested -aka- stems in the first part of compounds with 
the suffix -e not always expressed in writing are : Man. 
firyy/Zrynyyt " fruit-bearing ", Sogd., p. 34 on 24 ; the 
karmadhdraya S. 'wswytp'zn " pure-heart ", VJ 82.100.443. 43 C , 

1 The references by paragraphs are to my Grammar of Manichean Sogdian, 
which will be published by the Philological Society. 


'ws'-ytp'zn SCE 6.62, 'ws'yt'p'zn T Hi S 313, 12, 'wswytk 
(1176) p'zn VJ, = osuyde-pazn ; B. Srzm'fir'k " angry " 
VJ 225. SCE 287, < B. torzm'y, Srzm'k " anger " 1 ; Chr. 
nm'ny qrqy' B 49, 9.11, nm'nqrgy' i 57, 19 " repentance ", 
cf. Chr. nm'ny qyn : Man. nm'nkyn " penitent ", v. BBS 
p. 92 on b 25 ; Man. nwy m'x M 1, 84, S. nwy prn, nwy y'n, 
nwy /3'mh, proper names with " new ", 2 Sogd., pp. 6. 7, 15 ; 
Man. nymyxsp'p'scyk " relating to the midnight fasting ", 
BBB., p. 9. Sogd., p. 26 3 ; Man. z'tyfirc "womb", 
S. z't'kprctyh, Plur., v. BBB., p. 73. 

The -aka- stems Man. yrS' T u D 62, 7, B. yrS'M /SO.B 
98. 125, " neck," and wr' " profit ", appear without the 
suffix in the compounds Man. yrS mrywndyy " Adam's apple " 
So#d., 56, 29, and Chr. wrq'ryt, Plur., " beneficial," ii 6, 42, 
while pc'w* " quarrel ", and ^W 4 " knowledge ", have their 
suffix preserved in Man. pc'w'kryy, pc'w'ywxtyy, BBB., 
jriptnym, v. Henning, BSOS., xi 481, n. 6 Cf. the treat- 
ment of these stems before other suffixes, 1017. 1062. 

The compound vowel y stands for i/e in Man. pyyjypr'n, 
B. 'fiyzyfir'n and 'Pyzfir'n, cf. 1133, "feeling misery, 
unhappy " < v(i)z-vardn. 

It certainly stands for e in Man. ktyfiryk " temporal " 
= Parth. kdybr, NPers. kadevar, v. Henning, BSOS., ix, 84, 
cf. Horn, Gdr. Ir. Phil, i 2, 100 sq. 

1 B. 8rzm-, also occurring as 'tSrzm- in Dhu 190. 191. 198, may be an 
inverted spelling of *szme, which might stand for sme < Av. *aesma-ka-. 
Cf. the B. spellings cskw-, (>%-, ywycst-, for sku-, sti-, xwest-, 286, fn., 
and the development azyan > B. 'scy'n- > Man. l yjn, 263 fn. 2. For 
the loss of initial ai-, cf. the reduction in ytkw- < *haituka-, 126, and 
Parth. 'm<7 = dsmag, etc. 

2 Man. nwy(h), S. nw'y, attested in the Nom., the Ace., and the Loc. 
(nwy wstnCxyy c[yndr], restored by Henning, " in the new Paradise " 
M 591, 11), B. nw'kw, v. BBB., p. 61 on 516. The Ablative Man. en fiynw 1 
" New-moon " T ii D 140, 5, is not an isolated case with -aka- stems, 
v. 1255. 

3 nymyxsp- " midnight " against nymyS " midday " < nym-my8, nym 
nym " half-and-half " (?) T ii 63 b iii 3 (no context), cf. also Pers. nlmsab ; 
but the substantive is attested as an -aka- stem, S. nymy T i a. (6) R 10, 
Nom., Man. nymyy T it S R 19. V 1, Ace. 

4 Note that ^n'kh, VJ 1106. 1261, does not mean " chin, jaw ", but is 
the word for "body " on which see Henning, BSOS., xi 484, n. 3 


y is probably a case ending (Gen.-Dat.) in Man. Synyfrn 
" Fortune of the Religion " M 286 i 9, qwcyzprty' " purity 
of mouth " (the fourth commandment), and B. csmy wyny 
Nom., VJ 364, meaning " obvious, lit. visible to the eye " 
according to Henning who compares Pahl. csmdyt, Arm. 
csmarit (Hiibschmann, Armenische Grammatik, p. 513), 
Baluci cam-ctiS (Dames, Popular Poetry, ii, p. 193), MPers. 
csmg'h (Henning, Ein Manichdischer Kosmogonischer Hymnus, 
p. 223, fn. 4) and Gathic casmdng 6wisrd (Yasna 31, 13 td . . . 
6.0. ... aibi . . vaenahl vlspd "all that . . you see clearly"). 

To any of the three preceding categories may belong the 
proper names in the Mahrndmag fiyyryj " God- wish " 79, 
fiyyfrn " God-luck ", fiyyfiyrt " eoSe/cr^s-, Received from 
God " 87, wysym'x 57, wysy (87) frn, with wys- " joy, 
joyful " (?). 

Otherwise y occurring between two stems forming a com- 
pound is either the -oka- suffix, cf. pp. 137 sq. above, or the 
trace of Olr. -i- stems as in Anc. Lett, 'rtyxw, s'tyxw, v. 236, 
or it belongs to compounds borrowed from other Iranian 
languages, as in Chr. byyst'n " monastery ", S. fiyyst'n 
" paradise ", cf. 122, Man. m'nysfn " monastery ". 

A compound vowel ' has been noticed : 

(a) In Man. mzt'yzn < *mazdayazna-, Henning, JRAS., 
1942, 240, fn. 3, erudite form. 

(6) In B. 'wy pwt' kt'ky tyst " he enters the Buddha-house " 
SCE 177, modelled on Skr. compounds with buddha-. 

(c) Sporadically as a euphonic vowel in B. k/3t' prst " split- 
lipped, hare-lipped " SCE 86, Man. swk' csmyy (sukacsme) 
" impudent " 285, fn. 1, B. cVSySw " quadruped " 440 ; 
cf. also the numeral compounds with 'fit'- and B. '&'-, 1316. 
The compounds where ' is prothetic to the second part of 
the compound are treated below, but some of them may 
belong here. 

An ' between two Sogdian stems forming a compound is 
due to other reasons in the following cases : 

(a) ' is the Fern, ending of an adjective in Man. rwxsn'yrSmn 


" paradise ", Fern., and treated as such in Man. syry 'kty'y 
BBB., 627, Oblique of Man. syr'kty' " good deed ", on which 
see below, p. 141, /?. The Fern, ending of the light-stem noun 
xsp- is preserved in Man. nymyxsp'p'scyk, above, p. 138, so as 
not to obscure the meaning of the compound. 

(b) ' is possibly the Ablative ending in B. Spz'mwrt'y 
" starved, lit. hunger-dead " VJ 317, 'tipz'mwrtk Vim 133, 
Plur. written in two words S/?z' mwrt'yt VJ 1093, cf. B. cnn 
Spz' . . . myr- " to die of hunger " VJ 814. B. '8j8z' Vim 
134, 'Sz& P 2, 166, Chr. dbz* B 49, 31, are Ablatives, Chr. 
dbzy B 49, 28 probably Nominative (cf. 1051 fn.). 

(c) ' is the ending of an Olr. -d(h)- stem in Man. xwrmzffly, 
499, cf. 395 fn., and the spelling in two lines xrwmz[t}/' fiyyy 
73 fn. 

(d) ' is an adverbial ending in Chr. ny'zng ST ii 
" andersartig ", cf. Av. anya, in the compounds with ps'- 
< Av. pasca, 1143, in Chr. 'zd'qry' " announcement " 
ST ii < Olr. azda, and in Man. kpn' (13) kfinw " little by 
little " M 134 ii K. 

(e) a resulting from the Genitive ending -ahe is preserved, 
as in final position with light stems ( 404), in Man. 'rt'wxwst, 
Beruni o-^^bjl, name of the third day, <artahe wahistahe, 
against Man. 'rtxwst 392. 

(/) The a of Av. ahu-/a(n)hvd- is preserved in Man. (')/3j'xw- 
(vzax u ~) " unhappy ", 391, against the forms with metathesis 
sdtux and wdtux- (ib. y with fn. 2). 

(g) A prothetic aleph of the second part of the compound 
is preserved 

(a) in Man. mwrfjw'ndy " resurrectipn ", Chr. mwrf 
zwnty, v. Henning, Sogd., p. 42 on 27, < mwrt- " dead " 
+ Man. jwndty Sogd., I.e., S. 'zw'nty VJ 1110. T ii T 13, 
zw'ntyt ST i 87, 21, " alive " ; Man. wysp'sprymyy " all 
covered with flowers " M 178 i R 29, < wysp- -f- Man. 
sprymyy, B. 'spOrym'y, cf. BBS., p. 72 on 573 ; B. 'krt'sp's 
" obliging " Dhy 7, < } krt- " accomplished " + Man. B. 


'sp's BSOS., viii, 585 fn. 2. SCE 192. VJ 893, Chr. B. sp's 
i 35, 20. 39, 2. SCE 187, " service " *' 2 ; 

(0) in compounds with '&- < &rt- ( 148, 171) : the 

karmadhdrayas Man. syr'kty', syrkty', Chr. syr'qty* " good 

action", < syr + 'kty', and B. 'fiyz'krtyh "sinful action" 

SCE 419, 472, 475 ; the inverted bahuvrihi Man. syr'qtyy, 

Plur. fyr%* M 129 K 2, Chr. &//$' Voc., syrqty, "good, 

pious," cf. below, p. 147 ; the Chr. verbal nouns with *krti- 

( 1002) prxsy'qc " lamentation ", y'Vqcy, oblique, " erring, 

roving," pcyp'qc " confusion (?) " (<pt-, or joe-, -f- syp-, 

cf. S. 'psypw w'fl- " to preach wrong, lead astray ", Man. 

psypw'fiky' " slandering ", Henning, JRAS., 1944, 140 fn. 3). 

(h) ' represents an originally non-final a of the first part 

of the compound in Man. qs'wrzyy, adj., " tilling " (cf. Pers. 

kasdvarz), v. BBB., p. 72 on 570, which Henning explains as 

from *karsdw(a)-warz-, cf. Av. karsu- " cornfield ", formed 

hke Chr. dyx'w, 393, from dahyu-. 

(i) Amongst the examples where ' is the initial a- of the 
second part of the compound (B. "p"flr'y " dropsical " 
1134, Man. myVyt[yyt\ " Tathdgatas " Sogd. 27, 16, wn'r'm 
" nursery, plantation " BBB., p. 90, etc.) may be mentioned 
Chr. 'yn'qwc ST ii, Man. 'yyrikwc M 118 ii K 7, for which 
Lentz's explanation (Av. aenah- + &wc' " mouth ") is not 
convincing, since such a bahuvrihi ought to have the -aka- 
suffix, v. below, p. 144, 1. A verbal noun from the Present stem 
"kwc-, Sogd., p. 53, is possible, but the meaning of the com- 
pound is not clear. (Henning suggests -kwc might be a suffix, 
possibly with metathesis from *-cwk; 'yyn'- could also be 
derived from Av. haend-.) 

(k) The formation of the adjective Man. ftyptyc BBB., 
" divine," and of Man. Syw'styyc " demoniac ", Henning, 
JRAS., 1944, p. 142, 1. 7, S. Syw'styc, proper name, v. Henning, 

1 In all these compounds the first part of the compound happens to be 
a light stem. No ' between the two stems is found in Man. rw'nsp'syy 
" soul-service ", Henning, JRAS., 1944, p. 142, 11. 9 sq. 

2 The same applies to the verbal compound forms with S. s88h ( 763), 
S. 'fcrt'sSS', 'V'sS, 868, and to the suffix -stane in B. n'k'stn'k, 1118. 


Orientalia, viii, p. 88, is obscure. So is the origin of the -d- 
of mr&spnd " element ", cf. 138 fn. 

Summing up it can be said that two stems forming a 
compound are sometimes connected by ' or y, which can 
represent a compound vowel, mainly due to euphonic reasons, 
or a suffix (*-aka- or *-dkd-), or an inflectional ending. The 
last case includes the Oblique in Synyfrn, etc., p. 139 top, 
possibly the Ablative in B. pz'mwrt'y p. 140, b, and the 

Feminine of an adjective in rwxsn'yrSmn p. 139 bottom. 1 Finally 
it should be noted that as in Olr., the numerals 2 and 4 have 
special compound forms, B. Syp- and cyrS-, cYS'-, cf. 1316. 


No suffix is added : 

(1) With bahuvrihis (which, as a rule, have the -aka- 
suffix, v. below, p. 144, 1). 

Man. *'kt'rk " dutiful, having carried out his work ('rk) 
in the Plur. Obi. 'kfrktyy M 378, 5, and in the abstract of 
the negative n'kt'rky'Ji, v. Henning, Sogd., p. 30 on 7 ; com- 
pounds with 'wx "mind", cf. 236: S'twx "happy", 
r'twx " liberal, gift-minded ", BBS. ; Man. firtymbnd, Plur., 
"enduring the strain (ymbn)" M 617 ii 29 ; Man. fiyrty'n 
" having obtained favour (y j n) " T ii D 163 b i 9 ; B. kfit' 
prst " hare-lipped ", above p. 139, c ; B. riyr " meal-less ", 63, 
against the karmadhdraya ps'x'ryy " after-meal " ; Man. 
prfirtSst Sogd., 21, 16, " greeting, lit. cross-armed," Man. 
"k'[cyy pr/3r]t8st (restored by Henning) " crucified in the air " 
T ii D 79, 1, 14 ; pww s'k " countless ", and others with pw, 
v. 1164; B. swfit yws " having pierced ears ", above, p. 137, 
against Man. xrywsyy " hare " with -aka- suffix ; *systrw'n 
" scatter-brain ", in the abstract Man. systrw'ndty', 451 fn. ; 
Man. twyp'SS " xsviwi.isu- " Sogd., p. 40 ; Man. ws'tk'm 
" one whose desire is opened, loose " Sogd., 16, 2 ; B. zyrnft'm 
Dhy 216, " gold-coloured," against numerous words for 
colour in -/3'm'k. 

1 In Man. wnwnc{?m, N.Pr., " having victorious splendour " M 1, 147, 
the Feminine ofwnwnyy, cf. below, p. 145, 3, is used by attraction, the proper 
name referring to a woman. 


Here may be mentioned Man./n/rw'ft " having a good soul " 
EBB., and nstfrn " one who has lost his luck " T ii D 406 a 2, 
imitating and translating, according to Henning, MPers. 
hwrw'n and Parth. dwsfr, as well as the proper names Man. 
Synfr'o " Furtherer of the Keligion " Ml, 85 sq. 5 cf. /r'S 
" increase " M 896, 21, nwym'x, wysyfrn, etc., v. above, 
pp. 138, 139 ; also Man. mzyyn "armoured", which directly 
continues Av. *hama-zaena-, see 397. Cf. also below, p. 144, 
fn. 1, on "w-. 

Note that the proper names of this type in -/3'm(h) are 
feminine, cf. Sogd., pp. 7 sq. 

(2) With determinative compounds (here absence of suffix 
seems to be the rule) : 

(a) Substantives : B. 'wswytp'zn " pure-heart " above, 
p. 137 ; Man. yw srS " cow-year " T ii D 66 a 1 ; S. knSfir 
" town-gate ", above, p. 137 ; nymyS " South ", above, p. 137 ; 
Man. ps'yryw " an after-person, deputy ", beside ps'yrywy, 
v. below, p. 144, 2 ; Man. pw'nwt " non-protection, helpless- 
ness " BBB., b 77 ; Man. sm'nxsyS " Lord of the sky, 
Rex Honoris ", v. BBB. ; Man. srxwyc " head-ache " 
M 568, 8 ; syrn'm " cheers ; fame ", v. Henning, Kaw., 
p. 74 fn. 8. Olr. inheritance is xwrsn " East ", on the 
analogy of which xwrtxyz " West ", cf. 662, was formed. 

(b) Adjectives : "p m'nwk BBB., 721, fr m'nwq M 107 
ii 26, " similar to water, poison " ; fiyyfiyrt, proper name, 
above, p. 139 ; xwrnptxwrk " blood-stained ", in 
xwrnptxwrkSndyt Sogd., 21, 19. 

(c) Adverb : Man. ny'wr " autrefois ", 479. 

(3) Prepositional compounds : 

Man. cm'n " wholeheartedly " M 794 a 6, with Oblique 
ending B. cm'ny, Man. cnm'ny, v. 337 ; Man. prtxyz " after 
the setting ", quite uncertain, cf. 1142. 

(4) Amreditas : B. Jews kws, Man. "ykwn "ykwn, etc., see 
1633 sq. Cf. also B. ws'ws " one by one ", 299. 

(5) Compounds which in the case of Sanskrit would be 
called " synthetic ", viz. whose second part consists of a 


verbal noun formed from the present stem or from the root, 
and not attested independently, cf. Wackernagel, Altindische 
Grammatik, ii, 1, pp. 174, 178 sq. Noun of action : Chr. 
Ob'rywz " mendicancy ", cf. 57 fn. Agent : Man. rytywoo 
"face-cover" Sogd., 25, 27. 39, 14 (^guA, cf. Henning, 
Sogd. p. 41, EBB. p. 76 on 616, also fiywo Sogd. p. 33 on lla) ; 
nouns in -kar 1121, -kdr 1124, -tdk 1128, -var 1131, 
-dvar 1134, -bar 1135, -wdc 1138, and the doubtful -pa 
(Vocative) 1137. 

Suffix -oka-. 

(1) This suffix is found with the- majority of bahuvrihis, 
cf. Man. "x'sryjyy " having a desire of battling, soldier " 
Sogd. 27, 23 ; Chr. tw 9 qrsny " having your appearance, 
similar to you " ii 5, 10 sq. ; Man. syrn'my BSOS., xi 473, 7 
" famous, praised ", cf. syrrim above, p. 143, a ; etc. 

It is also used with bahuvrihis whose second part is a 
feminine noun, inclusive -oka- stems : Man. "wx'nyy " living 
in the same house (x'n') " x ; B. krw Snt'k " having defective 
teeth " from Chr. dnt' (on krw see Henning, BSOS., x, 96, 
Sogd., p. 23) ; B. krm'yr kwc'k " having a red beak " SCE 172, 
from kwc' " mouth " ; xii rytyy " having twelve faces " 
M 178 ii B, 14, qrmyr rytyy " red-faced, joyful " M 378, 4, 
from the Fern. B. ryth VJ 261 (ZKwh). 269 (ZKh). .838 (ZKh). 

(2) A number of determinative compounds, .especially 
substantives, also have -aka-. 

Substantives : 

Man. "x'sw'Syy " battlefield " Sogd. 27, 22, Chr. *'&wnw'dy 
" sonship ", v. Henning, Sogd. p. 26 top, from w'8 " place " ; 
S. 'zp'kwyy'k " base, root (wyy) of the tongue ", Sogd. p. 5 
Frg iv 12 ; yryw n'syy " soul-corruption " BBB., 546, from 
n's Man. Lett, ii 17, B. n's P 6, 14.146. P 8, 136 ; nqfitp'znyy 
" submissiveness " M 133, 51, from p'zn " mind " ; ps'x'ryy 
" after-meal ", ps'yrywy " deputy " 1143, against the above- 
mentioned B. n'yr, p. 142, 1, and Man. ps'yryw, p. 143, a ; 
rw'nsp'syy " soul-service ", v. above, p. 141 fn. 1, from (')sp's. 

1 See 351, where some of the bahuvrihis with "w- have no suffix. 


Cf. also the -oka- stem plurals ps'bwtyt *" After-buddhas " 
1143, and prsnxyt " small branches " 342 fn. 2, 1142, 
against bwt- (light stem) " Buddha " and snx " branch " ; 
these plurals, however, may belong to 970. 
Adjectives : 

Only B. 8'w kwr'k " night-blind, aveugle noir " SCE 80, 
has been noticed, against S. kwr VJ 50, Plur. kwrty TM 389a 
E 6, Chr. Obi. qwry ii 1, 26. Cf. also the Plural Man. wswsyt 
" various " Sogd. p. 25 on 9, against the adverb B. w&ws 
above, p. 143, 4. 

(3) " Synthetic " compounds. 

Nouns of action : Man. yw'nw'cyy " absolution ", from 
w'c- "to let go " ; q'tsxndytt Plur., " practical jokes," from 
*sxnd- " to ridicule ", v. BBB., p. 84 on 716. 

Agent : B. 'nyrks'yt Plur., " astrologer, lit. star- watcher " 
(*kas-, cf. Chr. pegs- "to wait"); B. S'tkrik "burglar, 
lit. wall-breaker " SCE 331 (kan- " to dig ") ; Chr. frm'n 
ptywsy i 84, 12, B. prm'nptyws'k SCE 25, " servant," abstract 
Chi. frm'n ptywsqy' " obedience " ii 6, 13 (ptyws- " to listen ") ; 
kpny'sy " fisherman " quoted Sogd. p. 51 (ny's- " to catch ") ; 
m'n 'nsk'fyy "schizophrenic" (*'nsk'f- "to spUt "), cf. 
BBB., p. 67 on 542 ; *psypw'/3y " preacher of wrong ", 
from which the abstract psypw'fiky', above, p. 141, ft (w'/2- " to 
say ") ; px'sw'cyy " quarrelsome ", from *w'c- " to speak " 
(cf. B. prw"c- " to disparage " SCE 81) or w'c- " to let loose " ; 
B. wn'wrik Padm 25. P 3, 58. 104, Man. wnwnyy T ii 207, 27. 
T ii D 66, 2, 7, Fern, wnwnc, above, p. 142 fn. 1, " victorious " 
(*wan-, cf. 897 fn. 2) ; z'yxyzyy " creeping on the earth " 
BBB., 512. 

Other suffixes occurring with compounds, where the corre- 
sponding second term is not attested independently with the 
same suffix, are : 

(1) -dka- x in S. ywsf$wrfkh " ear-hole " Sogd. p. 5, Frg. iv, 4, 

1 The ending of the adjective wrcy* " appeased, soothed, calm ", compara- 
tive S. wrcy'str Xli, V 21, cf; BBB., p. 67, top, is most unusual. A possible 
explanation is that wrcy' is a bahuvrihi having $y* " memory, mind " ( 102) 
as its second part, in which case wrt- may, according to a suggestion of 
Dr. Henning's, represent *wirata~, from \/ram. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. L 


spelled with final -h also in the other list of parts of the body 
(T ii T) referred to in Sogdica, in which Dr. Henning has 
recognized the compound nnsfiwn'kh " nostril ", and in the 
Locative ywrik pwn'yh " hair-pore " P2, 296, from Man. B. 
fiwn M 178 ii V 29. Frg in 64. 75. It is, however, possible 
that an -oka- stem */3wn' existed, cf. Yagn. vuna, Klimchitski, 
Zapiski, 1937, 19 (B. fiwriyt P 2, 373, may be Plural of pwn, 
*f3wn\ or of an -oka- stem *f$wny). 

(2) -k. After an -u stem in Chr. bz'xwq " unhappy ", cf. 391 
and above, p. 140, f. " Synthetic " compound,'k, 1137 

(3) -yny : Man. wysprtnyny, B. 'pt'rtnyrfkw, v. 1053. 
" Synthetic " compounds in -kryny, v. 1123. 

(4) -wndy : B. nw* 100 'fis'nywnch " measuring 900 
parasangs ", v. 1092. 

(5) -an in -zng'n " -fold ", v. 1034. 

" Synthetic " compounds in -fir'n, v. 1133. 

(6) -yk : Chr. b'msnyq " early, taking place when dawn 
rises " ii 3, 58 ; Man. ktypryk, v. above, p. 138 ; rtn/3'myk 
M 134 ii R 1 ; B. 9 yw p'r'yk " altogether ", v. 1116. In 
these examples, however, -yk is not a compound suffix, except 
perhaps in 'yw p'r'yk. b'msnyq and ktyftryk are derived from 
*b'msn (cf. xwrsn) and *ktyf$r ; rtnp'myk rather means 
" resplendent like a jewel " than " having the colour (splendour) 
of a jewel ", and is thus a compound of rtn- -j- */3'myk, 
cf. Av. bdmya-, vispo.bdmya-, and Pahl. bamik. 

(7) -n. Also the -n of Man. pwSfirn " scent-holder ", 
1029, is not a compound suffix. The use of -/3rn < -barana- 
is confined to compounds in the same way as that of -Sane 
and -stan(e), 1117 sq. The same applies to \ri)xrwzn 
" zodiacal circle " < *-wazana-, cf. Hittite va-sa-an-na, 
Henning, JRAS., 1942, 236. 1 

1 The B. adjective prpwbn DN 46 " perfumed " (if that is the correct 
reading : in the MS (PS) the final letter looks like the rudiment of what 
might be an -n, an -h, or an -'), cf. its synonym f$w8n in the preceding line, 


From the compounds quoted so far, a fairly comprehensive 
idea can be formed of the types of compounds in Sogdian. 1 
They may be briefly surveyed as follows : 

Bahuvnhis are still very much alive in Sogdian, whereby 
those having a past stem as their first part should be noted, 
cf. B. krt'sp's, kfit* prU, swfit yw$, Man. firtymbnd, quoted 
above, and their negatives with n'-, cf. rifSrtpcxwnyh and 
others, 1156. 

Of this type of bahuvrihi there are apparently some where 
the order of the parts of the compound is inverted : Man. Chr. 
fyr(')<fty " god, pious ", v. above, p. 141, 0, from syr " good " 
-f the -oka- Past participle 'qty ; B. fir'n fistk r'fik'w " a 
patient whose breath has stopped, an asthmatic " SCE 104 ; 
B. nyc ptrwysty " avec le nez obstrue ", 'skwch 'ptr'ywstk r'fi 
" maladie du gosier obstrue ", cf. JRAS., 1942, 99. Such 
" inverted bahuvrihis " occur in Sanskrit, v. Wackernagel, 
Altind. Grammatik ii, 1, 302 ; for Khotanese cf. armtada-, 
buljsajsera-, pajsamajsera-, Konow, SPAW., 1935, p. 438 ; 
for NPers. cf. AJLj j, .xJLJtJ j, ^.j^Vj> quoted by Horn, 
Gr. Ir. Phil i, 2, "p. 197." 

Amongst the determinative compounds those where the 
first part has the function of an Oblique case depending on 
the second part, seem to have been current. Apart from those 
quoted pp. 143, a. 144, 2, cf. Man. ftypsyy "god-son (angel) " 
M 178 ii R, 15, findktyc " house of imprisonment (prison) " 
BBS.; ywrwynyy, ObL, M 565, 2 "cow-oil (butter)"; 
qpyy'tyy " fish-meat " (recognized by Henning) M 568, 1 ; 

is likely, according to a suggestion by Henning, to go back to *fra~baudana-. 
The types represented by Av. baro.baoSa- and barat.zaoOra-, do not seem 
to occur in Sogdian, excepting ftrpsh "pregnant" P22, 18 (reference by 
Henning) = barat.puQrd (Parth. barbuhr, cf. Khot. baravirnd, Bailey, 
BSOS., ix, 77). 

1 A number of Sogdian compounds existed already in Olr., cf. Sfimbn 
(above, p. 137), mzfyzn (p. 139, a), mzyyn (p. 143, 1), Man. Syw&t (cf. BBB., 
p. 80 on 665), B. jSyS'w (cf. Sogd. p. 30), Chr. ptqry (cf. BBB., p. 93 on b 40), 
B. wp'p ( 98), and B. p'rSwnph " crupper " VJ 1419, which, according to 
Henning, corresponds to Pers. pardum\ Arm. *pardum (Stackelberg's 
reading for aprdum), v. Hiibschmann, Armenische Grammatik, pp. 244, 515, 
from Olr. *pari-dum(b)a-. 


S. myrprn, N. Pr., " Sunday-luck " Sogd., p. 6 ; rwwt "pyy, 
ObL, "river-water (river)" M 133, 17; x'xsryyt, Plur., 
" fountain-spring (source) " M 178 i V 1. More examples in 
Benveniste, Grammaire, p. 103. Not quite clear is m'nprm'tyy 
" <j>p6vr)crt,$ " (name of the third part of the soul), cf. BBS., 
p. 77 fn. 1, lit. " mind-thought " ? 

Less frequent are determinative compounds with adjectives 
or participles as their second part. See above csmy wyny 
(p. 139), pyyfiyrt (ib.), "p m'nwk, xwrnptxwrk (p. 143, b), s'w 
kwr'k (p. 145), Sfiz'mwrt'y (p. 140, b). Add S. ywtyywystkw " self- 
wished (= friend) ", v. Henning, JRAS., 1944, 139 fn. 4 ; 
Man. Sywny'tyy " possessed by demons " BBB., B. w't 
ny'()t'k Dhy 226. P 2, 36 " taken by wind, suffering from 
a wind-illness " ; S. kyn 'ws'wytk " free from hate " Sogd.., 
p. 60, 10 ; nyz'r pystytyy, Plur., " hardship-stricken " Man. 
Lett, ii, 13 ; wysp-yr^ktt, Plur., " allwissend " M 286 ii 14 ; 
S. wyspsyr " allerbest " T ii D ii 169 (a) i R 4. 

Karmadhdmyas with an adjective as first member are rare. 
See above 'wswytp'zn (p. 137) and syrn'm (p. 143, a). Add per- 
haps B. "8S/ty " supreme God ", cf. Skt. ddi, v. Benveniste, 
Grammaire, p. 159. A curious inverted karmadhdraya is 
Man. fiynw', above, p. 138 fn. 2 ; elsewhere the Nominative 
ftyyy nwyy occurs. 

Compounds of the " synthetic " type seem to have been 
quite common, as seen above. 

Dvandvas only seem to occur as translations of foreign 
dvandvas, cf. z'SmwrSw " birth-death (samsdra) " ; frnw'xsyqt 
" Glories and Spirits " T ii D 66, 2, 14, recognized by Henning 
as the equivalent of MPers. farrahdn u& wdxsdn, v. BBB., p. 11 ; 
Benveniste, Grammaire, p. 100, has pointed out Chr. qrzwrzt, 
Plur., " miracles " i 68, 22 ; mwrt'jw'ndy, above, p. 140, a, 
may also belong here. However, the number of dvandvas would 
be greatly increased if one considered as such the examples 
of synonymous hendiadys and of synthetic inflection quoted 
1635, 1636, 1639, 1640. 

Finally should be mentioned a more occasional type of 
compound, which Henning, BBB., has termed open compound. 


It consists of a collocation of a group of words, approaching 
the status of a compound, without having reached its stability. 
Cf. the following examples in BBB. : Spyry'hptyrnyy " opposed 
to writing " 524 sq. ; zfind pc'w'kryy " causing the comrades 
to quarrel " 543 sq. ; prSyzt jmncyq w'r " watering at the 
time suitable for the orchards " 571 ; mrc flnd'm yvfnkryh 
" a death-sentence sinner, a sinner punishable with death " 
645 sq. 


THE study of " cultural loan-words " is perhaps the most 
fascinating of philological pursuits. Such words, passed on 
from nation to nation, often undergo considerable phonetical 
changes ; but they possess very precise and limited significa- 
tions. So the more latitude we may claim in regard to form, 
the less we should arrogate to ourselves in the matter of 


In the Kharosthi documents found at Niya there occurs 
twice a word prigha (Nos. 316, 318) which Liiders, Textilien 
im alten Turkistan (Abh.P.A.W., 1936), p. 30, combined with 
Skt. prnga in the Mahavyutpatti, 232, 26, there explained as 
$jc $H " thin flowered silk ", Tib. dar ri-mo-can " silk marked 
with figures ". In Doc. No. 318 (line 6) Liiders corrected the 
text given by Boyer, Rapson, and Senart, and proposed 
speta-prigha " white damask ", an admirable suggestion 
which we shall be able to confirm with fresh material. Liiders' 
conclusion (based on his own emendation) that prigha meant 
" unicoloured figured silk (= damask) " can be fully sub- 
stantiated now. His emendation has been approved by 
T. Burrow, Transl. of the Kharosthi Doc., 1940, p. 59, who 
examined the original. 

In the Mahavyutpatti prigha is spelt prnga, with variants 
pringu and pringd. The best Sanskrit form would presumably 
be pringa. Thus spelt the word is found in yet another 
dictionary of Buddhist Sanskrit, the Fan-yu-ts'ien-tzu-wen, 
fol. 38 a 2 a , cf. Bagchi, Deux Lexiques Sanskrit-Chinois, i (1929), 
p. 280, No. 541. * It is there explained by % ling " fine and 
thin silk material, damask ". 2 

1 We note in passing that thacaria ibid., No. 537, toile, tissu, is thavay,a 
(cf. Liiders 21 sqq.) ; and that sucikarmma = sucikarma is translation of 
Iranian suj'inakirta (cf. Liiders 31). 

2 " Properly thin silken satin fabric, also thin linen, figured taffeta " 


occurs only in Central Asian Sanskrit ; it is unknown 
to Sanskrit proper, or indeed to any Indian dialect. However, 
it is found also in several Iranian languages, notably in those 
spoken in Chinese Turkestan; it also appeared in Western 
Iranian, in Pahlavi and Persian, whence it migrated to Aramaic 
and Arabic. We shall deal with Sogdian and Manichsean 
Middle Persian first. 

Among the Sogdian manuscripts discovered by M. Pelliot 
at Tun-huang and published by M. Benveniste in 1940 (Mission 
Pelliot en Asie Centrale, serie in-quarto, vol. iii, Textes Sogdiens, 
Paris, Geuthner) there is a shamanistic text (P 3) which 
describes the various types of " rain-stones " (fade) and their 
application. The poor " rain-maker " (yade-kare) needed an 
enormous number of utensils for his performance, enough to 
discourage anyone from taking up his profession. Amongst 
other duties he had to paint several pictures, one of them on 
a kp'wtkpr'ynk = kapotepring " a dark-blue piece of damask " 
(P 3, 128), another on an 'sm'nywn kp'wtk pr'ynk " a light- 
blue piece of damask " (P 3, 146). M. Benveniste, who 
tentatively suggested " rideau ", did not recognize our word. 
We know next to nothing of Sogdian poetry. But among 
the unpublished Manichsean Sogdian fragments there are at 
least two which seem to contain poems written in that 
language ; both are unfortunately difficult to read and under- 
stand. The contents of M 137 11 are described in its caption 
as a zndp'Syk = song-hymn ; its last lines are : 
spytyy pryng nywbn' Garment of white damask, 

Pyyy npyk 't Ssty' God's book in the hands. 

'Sryy z'r wftyy kwr&k Three thousand woven jackets, 

pncz'r zwynk'h oo Five thousand zwinkas, 

zyrnync swq 't Ssty' Golden pen in the hands. 

n'ktync [end of fragment] Silver .... 

The translation admittedly does not make much sense. 
But the passage is valuable for at least two of its words. 
Firstly, zwynk'h, evidently a kind of garment or fabric. 
This is surely the same as the ^jj ->y " suit of *zwinki", 


an item among the presents 1 sent to Mahmud of Ghazna 
by the ruler of Khitay (in about A.D. 1024), according to 
Saraf az-zaman Tahir Marwazi, ed. V. Minorsky (text 8 15 , 
transl. 20, comm. 79) ; Professor Minorsky suspects that the 
curious word is Chinese by origin. Secondly, spytyy pryng 
" white damask ", so exactly the speta-prigha of the Niya 
documents. In all Sogdian passages pring is qualified by an 
adjective denoting a colour, a fact which corroborates Liiders' 
definition of its meaning as monochrome damask. 

In Manichsean Middle Persian pring has been noticed only 
once, in M727 a V, a hymn fragment which is given here in 

1 rymn'n qyys'n u hmwz'g'n o myl'(d) 

2 pymwg pryng u prng'n o n'zysn *yg znyn u 

3 srwd 'y S'dyh o shynyy l y xwd b'w 

4 'wd bwyyst'n o 'wd p'rg d'sn 'wd 

5 pdyst'wg'n ny pry'dynd pd h'n rwc 'y 

6 wdnng oo phyqyrb 'y pydr qnygrw[$ri] 

7 h'n l y xwd pry'dyd pd h'n rwc [ ( y] 

1 ... the accursed dogmas and teachers; mantle 2 and 

2 suit, monochrome and polychrome damask ; pleasantries 
of women 

3 and songs of joy ; the wonderful sights of vineyard 3 

4 and garden ; bribes, presents and 

5 promises 4 : they do not help on that Day of 

1 The (}Jj^ (ibid.) is perhaps Sogdian *u$kar8i(k), from ukar8(wk'r8) 
" needle ". Hence, Sogd. *ukari(k) = Pers. sozangerd = Niya suj'inakirta 
(see above, p. 150, n. l),or more exactly = Pers. sozant which occurs, e.g., in 
the Divan-i Albise by Nizamuddin Mahmud-i Qari-i Yazdi, p. 201 (ed. 
Stambul, A.H. 1303). [Professor Bailey kindly reminds me of Turkish 
dskUrti, iskirti and zungim, zungum, both for kinds of " brocade ", see 
Tilrkische Turfantexte, vi, p. 170.] 

* myV(d) ? Reading uncertain. Provisionally I translate as if this were 
one of the words which from time to time have been connected with /i^AeoTiJ, 
viz. Mand. mwrit, Syr. nvrf, mrtwf, Arab, mirp on the one hand, and Syr. 
mtltha, Aram. myW on the other. 

8 Or " garden ", etc. ; baw from bay. 

4 BSOS., ix, 86. Restore pdyst\w\ also in Mir. Man., iii, p. 851 (a 54). 


6 Distress. The Image of the Father, the Maiden of 
Light, 1 

7 she who alone helps on that Day [of Distress . . . .] 
Here we find pring joined by prng'n parnagdn which 
provides the genuine Middle Persian form of Persian parniydn 
" multi-coloured damask ". Horn 2 derived the Persian from 
a pretended Middle Pers. *parriikdn ; he allowed himself to 
be deceived by the Pahlavi spelling which he analysed as 
PLNYK'N while in truth it is meant to be read as PLNYD'N, 
inverse spelling of parniydn. 3 The Pahlavi word is thus not 
different from the Persian. Horn, of course, could not refer 
to the Man. MPers. word; but he might have known the 
Arabic loan-word O&j barnakdn (Jawaliql, Mu'arrab, 24, 29, 
ed. Sachau), or the Jewish p3*)Q parnagdn in the Esther 
Targum (5 1 , 6 10 ), see Siddiqi, Studien uber die persischen 
Fremdworter im klassischen Arabisch, p. 74. Fleischer apud 
J. Levy, Neuhebraisches und Chalddisches Wb. y vol. iv, p. 229, 
proposed reading jr^lB instead, and referred to Buxtorf, 
Lex. Chald. Talm. et Rabb. (Basel, 1639), col. 1820, where this 
spelling was given. But Buxtorf himself gave f^H5 (thus 
very correctly pointed) in col. 2383, and this is undoubtedly the 
proper reading. The Targum text is KrO pID HNNTtP NT!, 
Buxtorf est sericum Parnaginum optimum, " it is best (multi- 
coloured) damask silk." 4 

In Persian pring has suffered three changes. Firstly, a brief 
vowel, either i or a, was inserted between p and r. Secondly, 
the final -ng was replaced by -nd. Thirdly, the main vowel 
was changed to -a-. The standard Persian form, parand, 
occurs already in Pahlavi where we have parand ud parniydn 

1 " Maiden of Light " here = Lichtgesialt, cf. Polotsky, Le Museon, xlv, 
270 sq. C. R. C. Allberry, Manich. Psalm-book, 66 22 -*, 81 31 - 2 , 84 3 ' 6 . 

2 Orundriss Iran. Phil., i, 2, p. 46. 

8 E.g., GrBd., 118 4 , d'lypwlnyd'n = dar-l porniyan = Pers. dar-i parniydn 
" brasilwood " (for -pwl- cf. Jewish Pers. d'l-pwrny'n, Bacher, Hebr.-Pers. 
Wb., p. 51 of Hebrew text, No. 237). 

4 Chinese patterned silk has been found in Palmyra in tombs as early 
as the second or third century A.D., see 0. Maenchen-Helfen, The Art 
Bulletin, December, 1943, vol. xxv, 358 sqq. (with full references). 


combined in Sn., iv, 4, p. 86, in Tavadia's edition l ; in the 
MS. K 20 the last letter of par and is here marked as -d 
(fol. 63 V 14). It also is found even in the Talmud where, as 
already Buxtorf saw (loc. cit.), tftJID NTtP sera pvranda 
" damask silk " replaces the Targumic sera parnagdn ; but 
the words pdrandd and parnagdn are naturally not identical. 

The change of final -ng to -nd is common enough in Persian, 
although it is not mentioned in any historical grammar of 
that language. The following examples may suffice : 

1. Pers. aurand " throne, glory, etc." from Pers. aurang. 2 

2. Pers. kuland " pickaxe " from Pers. kulang. 

3. Pers. dirand " world, time " in a verse by Kudaki, 
cun to bas did u binad in dirand " this world has seen many 
like you and will see still more " (Asadi, ed. Horn, p. 30 ; 
S. Nafisi, Ahvdl va As'dr-i . . . Rudaki, vol. iii, Tehran, 1319, 
p. 1055). 3 From Pahl. derang " (the) long (period of the 
present world) ", in Zarwdn-i derang-xwaddi. Even in Pahlavi 
MSS. the word is often pointed derand. In the new edition 

1 B. M. Dhabhar, The Persian Rivayats, Bombay, 1932, p. 30, erroneously 
translates as " a girdle of silk ". I take this opportunity to correct the 
reading of $n., iv, 6, where Tavadia, p. 87, gives garmdnak-i 2-tok, against 
the MSS. both of which have gwlm'nk. Read gurmanak = Syr. gwrmnq', 
gurmdn(a)qd " vestis duplicata " P. Smith 692, Brockelmann, Lex. Syr. 2 
134, Noldeke, Mand. Gramm., 40, n.3. Arab, zurmdnaqah " a sleeveless woollen 
vest " (Mu'arrab, 76, and Sachau's notes, p. 38) is possibly the same word 
(differently Fraenkel, Aram. Fremdw., 289). gurmanak < gurbdnak < 
varpdnak ? Cf. Arm. varapanak, etc., Pers. barvdn (Kohut, Kritische 
Beleuchtung der Persischen Pentateuch-Uebersetzung, 56 sq.), the etymon of 
Skt. vdrabdna which P. Thieme, ZDMG., 91, 91 sqq., discussed. 

2 Parthian 'brn(ri)g has been compared, but it means neither " splendeur " 
(Benveniste, JA., 1936, i, 194 sq.), nor " chastity " as I had translated, 
misled by the apparent Syriac equivalent nkpwt' = nakhputhd (Pognon, 
Coupes de Khouabir, 129 u = 189 22 ; Cumont, Becherches, i, 35). This is 
almost certainly a copyist's mistake for 'kypw? = akklputhd " sedulitas " ; 
it corresponds to Sogd. 'ntwys, Uyyur tavranmaq, and the Chinese words 
apud Waldschmidt-Lentz, Dogm., 490 sq. (H 165 6 , 170 6 , 174c 5 ). Hence, 
Parthian abrayg = eagerness, assiduity. 

3 dirand-asd, in another verse, is certainly a wrong reading, in the place 
of faryand-asa (see Nafisi, loc. cit., pp. 1000, 1153 sq.), or rather fazyand-asd. 
The error may be due to the proximity of the articles dirand and faryand 
(= fazyand) in Asadi's dictionary, at any rate in the MS. published by Horn. 


of Asadi's dictionary by A. Iqbal (Tehran, 1319) there is 
even a verse by RudakI for dwand = dirdz " long " (p. 101). 

4. Pers. dvand " a line on which grapes are hung to 
dry " from Pers. dvang (both forms are well attested) 
from *dving, from the root of dmxtan " to hang ", cf. dvingdn 
" hanging ", etc. 

The last-quoted example shares with parand the change of 
-ing > -and. The derivation of parand from pwing is put 
beyond doubt by the fact that the latter form still occurs 

occasionally in Persian, ^j^ is registered by the author of 

the Farhang-i Jahdngiri who gives pirang as pronunciation 1 
and " a damascened sword " (see below) as meaning ; but 
he quotes no passage. However, I find that the rare form 
was used by Jamal al-QurasI in as-Surdh mina 's-Sihdh, his 
abridged Persian translation of al- Jauharfs Arabic dictionary, 
for example s.v. firind. The author who lived in Kashghar 
in the second half of the thirteenth century, probably used 
a local form. As regards the main vowel of the word, Firdausi 
still pronounced it as p(a)rind (psrind)'; he rhymed it with 
hind, e.g. Sdhndme 7, 759 ; 15, 4079 (= ed. Vullers, i, 171, 759 ; 
iii, 1729, 4087). But his contemporary 'Unsuri said parand 
(e.g. Asadi, ed. Horn, p. 31), and so did Nasir-i Khosrau 
(Divdn, 143, 14). The Arabs who borrowed the word preserved 
the older pronunciation ; they have it as birind (Mu'arrab 28) 
or, more commonly, firind (ibid., 60, 111), cf. Siddiqi, loc. cit., 
23, 71. 

The meaning of the Persian word is sometimes wrongly 
given as " plain silk ". This misunderstanding arose from 
the frequent juxtaposition of parand and parniydn ; as the 
latter was known to mean " figured silk ", the inference was 
drawn that the former should be " non-figured = plain silk ". 
In truth both words mean " figured silk " in Persian (as in 
the other languages), the difference lying merely in the 

1 Better paring or piring. Not to be confused with the word for 
** bronze ". 


colours of the fabrics they describe. Cf., e.g., this famous verse 
by Farrukhi : 

cun parand-i bldgun l bar rui pusad maryzdr 
parniydn-i haft-rang andar sar drad kuhsdr 2 
which E. Gr. Browne translated 3 : 

Since the meadow hides its face in satin shot with greens and 

And the mountains wrap their brows in silken veils of seven 


The fine tracing of fresh meadow-grass is compared with 
the light lines woven into damask, which is here said to have 
the " colour of (the young leaves of the) willow " (if bldgun 
is the proper reading) ; parand is monochrome, parniydn 
polychrome, here as always. 

Further proof is provided by the development of the 
meaning of the word in Persian and Arabic which can be 
understood only if it meant " damask ". For parand/firind 
is commonly used also of the " damask " of a sword, see, e.g., 
the elaborate description given by al-Beruni in the Kitdb 
al-famdhir fl (ma'rifat) al-fawdhir, cf. Zeki Validi, ZDMG., 
90, 26 sq. (the text is now available apud Zeki Validi 
Togan, BlrunVs Picture of the World [Mem. Arch. Survey of 
India, vol. 53], p. 102 ; firind and also ifrind). Finally, the 
word is misapplied as " a blade of damasked steel " : with 
poets it often means little more than " a good sword ". 

One hesitates to propose an etymology for a word of this 
type as its home language is not easily established. Possibly 
pring belonged originally to the language of the Sogdians 
who played such a prominent part in the overland trade 
between China and the West, with their settlements all along 
the road which not unsuitably has been named the " silk- 
route ". One could imagine an Old Iranian *upa-ringa- 

1 Vulgo nilgun ; the rarer word apud Asadi, ed. Horn, 31 and 97, ed. 
Iqbal, 92 and 370. 

2 Divan, ed. 'AU-i 'Abdu'r Rasuli, Tehran, 1311, p. 177. 

3 Gahdr maqaleh, transl., p. 43. 


(with the word ringa occurring in Av. Hapto.iringa-), which 
would mean " marked, lined, figured " or the like, and which 
certainly would become pring in Sogdian. 


ffylriU/wL gerezman " grave, tomb " is a frequent word in 
Armenian. It occurs in the earliest (fifth century A.D.) 
documents of that language e.g. the " (whited) sepulchres " 
of Matthew 23 27 are gerezman in the Armenian version and 
is still used nowadays, cf. Artases Abeghian, Neuarmeniscke 
Grammatik, 1936, p. 232 : gerezman = Grab, gerezmanatun 
= Friedhof, Kirchhof. It has often been suspected of Iranian 
origin, but the only Iranian etymology ever proposed, a 
derivation from Parsee Persian garzmdn " heaven ", has been 
rejected by Hiibschmann, Arm. Gramm., i, 127, for the very 
best of reasons. For that Iranian word (Av. garo ddmana, 
garo nmdna, Pazend garodmdn, Sogdian yardman, Parthian 
gardmdn, Manich. Middle Persian gardsmdn, etc.) which in 
any case has interior -S-, not -z- (Parsee Persian garzmdn 
being a late and corrupt spelling), means nothing but " the 
highest heaven, the Throne of God ", or loosely " heaven, 
paradise ". While a word for " tomb " may come to mean 
" the underworld ", " the Beyond ", conceivably even 
" paradise " (although one hesitates to admit this), the 
reverse development, paradise ->tomb, is well-nigh un- 
thinkable. 1 

Far from Armenia, on the eastern fringe of the area 
penetrated by Iranian culture, there is another interesting 
word for " tomb " in Mongolian, yjal^^Q^ suburban = 

" sepulchre, tomb pyramid for the relics of deified persons " ; 

1 Marr, Zap. Vost. Otd. Imp. Russk. Archeol. Ob6., 1890, vol. v, 319, n. 3, 
ably butunconvincingly defended the derivation from garoddmana. He quoted 
Hebrew stfol ; but whatever may have been the original meaning of the 
Hebrew, it certainly was not " paradise ". He suggested an intentional 
depreciation of the word by Christians ; but there is no other trace of 
such a process (which would be parallel to the way in which the Devas 
became demons) in Armenian. In any event, the interior -z- is the stumbling- 


as Buddhist term, suburban is the equivalent of Skt. stupa, 
i.e. a mound or tower or pyramid or dome in which relics 
of the Buddha are preserved. It is found already in Uyyur 
Turkish where in the hendiadys with either sin " tomb, grave " l 
(see F. W. K. Miiller, Uigurica, i, 58 ; ii, 53 ; Bang-Gabain- 
Rachmati, Turkische Turfantexte, vi, p. 128, line 290 var.), 
or sitavan = Skt. sitavana, si- (Uigurica, iii, 19 9 , 2 1 3 ) it is 
" burial-place " in general. By itself it is met with in a 
Manichsean story (LeCoq, Turkische Manichaica, i, 6 2 , spelt 
swpwryn in Man. script, = either supuryan or suburyari) 
which tells of a prince who being intoxicated spent a night 
in a tomb : he mistook it for his own house. It is clear from 
the story that a suburyan was a sepulchral monument raised 
above the ground, not, e.g., a subterranean vault. The word 
was still current among the Turks of Transoxania in the 
eleventh century; Mahmud al-Kasyari registered it in his 
Divan luydt it-Turk, i, 425 (where jlc^w is misprinted as 
jlc jw) and explained it as an-nd'us wa-maqdbir ul-kafarah 
11 a non-Muslim sepulchre, 2 the burial-places of the heathen ". 
See also Brockelmann, Mitteltiirk. Wortschatz, p. 184. 

MM. Chavannes and Pelliot, at the end of their careful 
discussion of the Turco-Mongol word (Traite Manicheen, 131-2 
[107-8]), suggested that it might be a loan-word from Iranian, 
and M. Gauthiot supported them with an etymology, *spur- 
%dn " demeure de perfection ". This explanation, although 
ingenious, is not perfect ; for suburyan has -y-, but x^ n ( a ^) 
" house " 3 has -%- ; further, *spur, properly uspurr (in 
Sogdian spurn -> spun), means " perfect " but not " perfec- 
tion " so that we should have to assume a type of compound 
that is rather rare in Middle Iranian. But the main objection 

1 Cf. Brockelmann, 'All's Qissa'i Jusuf, p. 52 ; Aptullah Battal, Ibnii- 
Miihannd Lugati, Istanbul, 1934, p. 60. 

2 Arab, na'us (vaos) has often this meaning, see Dozy s.v., cf. also Syr. 
nausa = cemetery, Brockelmann, Lex. Syr. 2 421. One is tempted to render 
it with " stupa " here. 

3 In passing we note that Sogd. tfrfkh " hut " should be read Tcz^kh 
s= Persian kaze. 


is against the proposed semantic development : demeure de 
perfection, or rather " perfect-house ", does not seem to me 
to be a satisfactory term for a " tomb ". 

Thus we have two words, Arm. gerezman and Turk.-Mong. 
suburyan, both = " tomb ", both suspected of Iranian origin 
but never compared with each other. So far no corresponding 
form has been found in any Iranian language. However, 
a suitable word is at hand in Persian where we have mary(a)zan 
and marz(a)yan " sepulchre, cemetery ". The second spelling 
is established by a pun upon (-bar) zayan " vulture " (or 
" kite ") x in a verse ascribed to 'Unsuri, the poet-laureate 
of Mahmud of Ghazna 2 : 

har-ke-rd rdhbar zayan bdsad 
manzil-i u be-marzayan bdsad 

i.e. " whoever takes a vulture as his guide, his lodging will be 
in the cemetery " (Asadi, p. 105, ed. Horn, p. 362, ed. Iqbal). 
The other form, mary(a)zan, invariably evokes a play on 
maryzdr. Imami-i Haravi, a poet of the thirteenth century, 
said : 

an jihdnddr-1 ke gast andar nabard 

maryzdr az zaxm-i tiyas mary(a)zan 

i.e. " that great king through whose sword-blows, in 
the course of the battle, the plain has turned into a grave- 
yard " (Farhang-i Jahdngin). Sams-i Fakhri (fourteenth 
century) produced this not very original verse : 

sdhl ke bar muxdlif-i dargdh-i xistan 
az kme maryzdr kunad hamcu mary(a)zan 

i.e. " the king who in his wrath against the antagonists of his 
court turns the plain into a cemetery " (p. 108, ed. Salemann). 
Mary(a)zan (Farhang-i Rasldl) is better than marz(a)yan 
(F.-i Jahdngiri) in a verse by Sana'I (first half of twelfth 

1 From z&yan, from z-yan, see BSOS., x, 97, n. 2. 

2 S. Nafisi, loc. cit., p. 1104, No. 801, attributes it to Rudakl, apparently 
on the authority of Sururi. One would rather trust Asadi whose work 
preceded that of Sururi by several centuries and was one of the most 
important sources of Sururi's dictionary. 


century) who may have been the first to play on 
maryzdr : 

hi6 nandisl ke d^ir l cun buvad an]dm-i kdr 
maryzdr dyad fazd-yi ft'l-i to yd mary(a)zan 
i.e. " are you not worried at all by the thought how 2 your 
finis will be ? Whether the retribution of your deeds will 
be the Meadow (of Paradise) or the Tomb (of Hell) ? " It 
was from this verse, I presume, that some clever lexicographer 
inferred that mary(a)zan should have had the meaning of 
dtas " fire " ; by that word he evidently meant " the infernal 
fire ". His successors interpreted his dtas and boldly asserted 
that mary(a)zan meant (1) Hell, (2) a brazier, (3) cemetery. 
This set of meanings is as baseless as the wrong spelling 
marzaydn which is paraded in the dictionaries. The older 
lexicographers know only oimarz(a)ydn, mary(a)zdn=guristdn 
" cemetery ". 

A variant of mary(a)zan is the form used in Parsee Persian, 
maryuzan, from *maryuzan < *marydzan. It is employed 
for the famous mausoleum of Khosrau Anosherwan, see 
B. N. Dhabhar, The Persian Rivayats, 586 (with references). 
J. Darmesteter, fitudes Iraniennes, ii, 132 sq., proposed an 
etymology (from *mary " death " -j- Pahl. V% 3 " daxma- " 
= Old Pers. " apaddna " 4 ) which, although brilliant at the 
time, cannot seriously be entertained now. An etymology 
should be based on the correct Persian form, not on a corrupt 

A major obstacle to the intended comparison of gerezman, 
marzyan, and suburyan appears to be the initial group of 
sounds of the Turco-Mongol word, but there is no real difficulty . 
The first vowel of suburyan is obviously intrusive (this was 
assumed also by M. Gauthiot) ; the vowels of all three words 
seem to be altogether of no account, excepting the stable -d- 
of the final syllable. Initial s- in a foreign word in Turkish can 

1 Var. ke ta -)(vad. 

2 Or: whether in the end, when the final accounting will be, the 
retribution, etc. 

3 On this word see now BSOAS., xi, 479. 

4 See these Transactions, 1944, 110, n. 1. 


represent original s- or z-. As Turkish did not possess initial z-, 
that sound was regularly replaced by s-. This is so well 
established that there is no need to quote examples ; but 
we may take this opportunity of mentioning a hitherto 
unrecognized Sogdian loan-word in Turkish, viz. Turk. r-lj-C 
sanduvay " nightingale " (see Kasyari, i, 435 ; iii, 134 
= 'andallb ; Ibn Muhanna, 176 = hazdr) from Sogdian 
zntw'ch ('wry') = zandwdc " singing (bird) ", but also " nightin- 
gale " as similar Sogdian loan-words in Persian (zand-waf, etc., 
see BSOS., x, 104 sq.) prove. Thus suburban may represent 
an earlier *zburyan. Its initial zb- can perhaps be explained 
as the outcome of an original zm-. Such groups of consonants 
are often subject to changes, especially when a word has to 
be adapted to an alien tongue. A good parallel for this par- 
ticular change in a loan-word is provided by the Arabic for 
" emerald ", zabatfad form zmargad. The whole structure of 
zmargad closely resembles that of *Sogdian *zmuryan or 
*zmwyan which, I think, we are entitled to claim was the 
original word that the Turkish tongue transformed into 
suburban. 1 

Thus there was an Iranian word for " tomb " or " sepulchre " 
which consisted of a final syllable -an preceded by the four 
consonants r, m, z, and y (Arm. g = Iran, g and y) which 
were interspersed with some odd vowels and occurred in 
variable sequence ; the liberal metatheses were due no doubt 
to the character of the consonants as continuants. Neglecting 
the vowels we have : 

*Median yrzm-an -* Armenian gerezman 
*Sogdian zmry-an -* Turkish suburban 
Persian mrzy-an -> marzayan 

Persian mryz-an -* mary(a)zan, maryuzan. 

This is as far as matters can be carried with safety. As 
we have no means of deciding which order of the consonants 

1 Similarly Kasghari's tarmaz/turmuz " sorte de courge " (recently discussed 
by Pelliot, Toung Pao, xxxvii, 1944, 101) from tarbuz. Professor Bailey 
reminds me of Minorsky's derivation of Turk, 'ismar-la- from uspar-, JRAS., 
1942, 194. Note the presence of -r- and a sibilant in these words. 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. M 


was the original one, there is not much point in inventing 
etymologies. E.g., one could think of Av. *zdmarkana- " dug 
in the ground ", on the model of Av. Z9marguz- " hiding 
underground " on the one hand, and of Av. avakana- " hollow, 
cave " or hankana- 1 on the other ; but unfortunately the word 
for " tomb " seems to have had an interior Olr. -g-. The 
only known Old Iranian word which apparently has all 
required sounds is OPers. m(a)rgazana, the name of a month ; 
but this is merely restored from the Elamite transliteration 
markazanas, and hence somewhat uncertain ; " sepulchral " 
is in any case not convincing as name of a month. 

One would like to know what kind of tomb it was that was 
designated by our word. The fact that it was borrowed by 
other nations suggests that the tomb in question was of a type 
current in Iran, but certainly not an ordinary " grave ". 
The nearly total oblivion into which the term fell in its home 
country and in particular the silence on it of the Avesta 
(which surely contains more than enough references to funeral 
rites) point to a mode of burial of which the Magian priests 
disapproved and which they suppressed together with the 
word for it. In view of the passages discussed in this article 
and considering the archaeological evidence as presented by 
E. Herzfeld, Archaeological History of Iran, 31 sqq., one is 
inclined to think that the word was originally employed for 
the type of grave-chamber raised above the ground whose 
most magnificent example is the famous tomb of Cyrus at 

1 But this is possibly not an Iranian word at all. Av. hankana- would 
become hangan in MPers., and this occurs in Man. MPers., T i 5 = M 1005, 21 
(no context), hngn 'wd hyjg, evidently = " basin and pail ". This hangan 
cannot easily be separated from Hebrew aggan, Syr. aggand, Ar. infanah, 
tffanah, etc., from Akk. agannu, cf. Brockelmann, Lex. Syr. z 4a (where 
references, also to Arm. angan). The Av. passage, in the Ardvi Sur Yasht 
(from about 400 B.C.), hankaine paiti aiyha Zdmo " in a hankana of this 
earth " reminds one of Talmudic aggane dz'ar'a " hankanas of the earth " 
(so to say), cf. Buxtorf 23 " fossae proprie rotundae quae sunt quasi agganoth 
crateres rotundi, scribit R. David ", see further J. Levy, Neuhebr. Chald. Wb., 
i, 21 sq. Thus hankana may be the Akkadian/ Aramaic word, slightly 
transformed by popular etymology. 


THE subject of dialect lias been very much to the fore in 
linguistic circles in recent years, especially so far as Komance 
languages are concerned, and also among non-specialists, 
where there is still some conflict about the position of dialect. 
Eecently on the radio a school-mistress condemned the use 
of dialect she even called dialects " dead languages " and 
an article in The Times Educational Supplement recently 
pleaded for bilingualism on the grounds that dialect is a 
handicap socially and in business. This would make interesting 
reading for the prosperous industrialist of Yorkshire or 
Lancashire, and serves to show how necessary it is to qualify 
such a statement, which is true only of an area where dialect 
is not strong, and where it is looked upon as something 
inferior. It will, therefore, perhaps not be out of place at 
this moment to examine the value and problems of dialect 
study, and to raise the question of dialect geography and 
dialect atlases for England. In this article I propose to deal 
with these points in the light of the experience gained in my 
own field-work, and to illustrate the points by reference to 
a particular Yorkshire dialect against its general Northern 

The value of dialect study hardly needs to be stressed : 
its chief value is perhaps its use to future students. One of 
the essential points contained in what may be called the 
manifesto of the Neo-grammarians was that investigation of 
dialect, of the living vernaculars, should be undertaken, 
with a view to arriving at a more precise understanding of 
human speech, and receiving new enlightenment on the 
nature of language. To elaborate on this point I suggest that 
we need only consider how much more exact our knowledge 
of the earlier stages of our language would be had all Middle 
English dialects been accurately recorded and charted so 


that we had, for example, precise knowledge of the develop- 
ment of M.E. o in the north, the formation of new diphthongs, 
with the date of each change and the area in which it took 
place, or when and where the lengthening of short vowels 
took place before certain consonant groups. Again, much of 
the haziness of our knowledge of Early Modern English 
sound-changes could be cleared up if we had available carefully- 
edited works of dialect grammarians. Nor is the information 
to be obtained merely a question of sounds, for dialect publica- 
tions and material generally could give us valuable informa- 
tion about the date of acquisition of new words. But if 
the material for the Early Modern English period is scanty 
for the literary language, it is almost non-existent for dialects. 
It may be that present-day speech will be as interesting to 
students of the future as Middle English or Early Modern 
English is to students now, and therefore we should see that 
they have adequate records of all shades of our speech. Then 
again, the results of a close examination of present-day speech, 
after verification under all conditions, allow us to draw general 
conclusions on language as a whole, and help us to understand 
the linguistic conditions governing the development of earlier 
stages of the language, otherwise accessible to us only in 
written records. Dialects, when pure, show phonological 
laws working unfettered by fashion and literary convention, 
and for that reason the general principles of the growth of 
language are best learnt from living popular dialects. Dialects 
also represent stages of development through which the literary 
language has passed, and retain forms lost by the latter. 
Moreover, the dialects have, in many cases, kept apart 
sounds which have fallen together in the literary language, 
and so are valuable for etymological reasons : for example, 
Modern English confuses O.E. a and O.E. o lengthened in 
an open syllable, but the two sounds are kept apart in many 
modern dialects. But the work is urgent, for education, 
broadcast speech, and, above all, easier means of inter- 
communication, are rapidly breaking down dialect. 

The first question to be considered is that of some of the 


problems facing the dialect^worker, particularly those which 
have arisen as a result of the work of what may be called the 
Neo-linguist School. A full account of the differences between 
the Neo-grammarians, or the Jung-grammatiker, and the 
Neo-linguists would be out of place here ; it is sufficient to 
remark that there is obviously much to be said for both, and 
much will undoubtedly be said before the matter is finally 
settled. Though the Neo-grammarians are taken to task by 
the Neo-linguists for their strict adherence to sound-laws, 
the Neo-linguists seem to have their own laws, equally strict. 
The methods are, in my opinion, really complementary, for 
both have their advantages, and their uses under varying 
conditions. A glossary can obviously give more information 
about the meaning and use of individual words than can an 
atlas, but the latter shows the words in relation to other words 
and equivalents in neighbouring areas, and may put forward, 
and even solve, problems not suggested by the glossary. 
If this is true of the study of the words themselves, it is 
perhaps even more so of the individual sounds making up 
the words. If it be argued against the old method that 
glossaries isolate words, then if a comparative grammar be 
provided alongside the glossary of each area, this would 
relate the words to one another. Perhaps the ideal method 
would be to produce a glossary and comparative grammar for 
each area, and then use this to prepare a general atlas. It 
seems that unless we have accurate records of the dialects 
taken at all stages by the methods of the Neo-linguists we 
must make use of the methods of the Neo-grammarians, for 
the historical method becomes a necessity when we are dealing 
with the development of a dialect over a long period of time, 
and where we are dealing with related dialects the com- 
parative method of the Neo-grammarians is essential. 

Mention of the historical method raises the question of 
the starting-point of the investigation : shall it be the modern 
dialect or, let us say, Middle English for with our present 
limited knowledge of the precise areas in which even the four 
main dialects of Old English were spoken it is not practicable 


to begin as far back as that period. Here much depends on 
the amount and reliability of the early material. If there is 
sufficient trustworthy material over the whole period covered 
by the investigation it would seem better to start at the 
beginning and work forward, thus following the actual 
development, but such material is very scanty and I doubt 
if any dialect could produce unbroken records. I think myself 
very fortunate in the amount of early material I have been 
able to find for one particular Northern dialect, and even 
that leaves large gaps. In any case, as I hope to show in the 
course of this article, there are many difficulties involved in 
handling written dialect material. My own method has been 
to record the modern dialect, and then connect it as far as 
possible with earlier accounts and records, and so give as 
complete a picture as possible of its development. The method 
is an attempt to bridge the gap between the Neo-grammarians 
and the Neo-linguists, for I have carried out the preliminary 
investigation on the lines of the Neo-linguists, though with 
perhaps greater attention to sounds than they would like, 
and then I have attempted to reduce the material to order 
by handling it according to the methods of the Neo- 
grammarians. No map has been prepared for the area, as it 
is small and rather self-contained, but I hope later to prepare 
maps of this and the neighbouring areas. 

The next problem which arises is whether the emphasis 
should be on phonology or vocabulary, or, to put it in other 
words, should we look for sounds, as components of words, 
or the words themselves ? In an investigation of a small area 
the two may fall together, but I think that they need to be 
kept apart for larger areas, for I know from experience that 
sound-areas and word-areas would not correspond : for 
example, the general vocabulary of the West Riding probably 
does not differ much from area to area, but there are well- 
defined differences so far as the sounds are concerned. The 
whole problem and its solution are conditioned by the area 
of the investigation, but it seems to me better to concentrate 
chiefly on sounds, as being basically more important than 


words, especially as the same sound occurs in many different 
words, and may even be affected by its position relative to 
other vowels or consonants in the word. Again, many words 
common to two or more dialects vary in pronunciation in 
the different dialects, and surely the phonological develop- 
ment is at least as important as the actual words, for here we 
have examples of a word itself undergoing change in pro- 
nunciation as between different areas. 

The following, I think, are the chief points to be considered 
in phonological investigation : 

(a) sounds, originally distinct, but now fallen together in 
Standard English, which the dialect keeps apart. 

(b) conversely, sounds 'which are kept apart in Standard 
English, but which have fallen together in the dialect. 

(c) dialect variants from Standard English sounds, parti- 
cularly developments in Standard English which have 
not taken place in the dialects, as, perhaps, short vowels 
in the dialects before consonant-groups which have 
caused lengthening in Standard English. 

(d) establishment of earliest dates for dialect variants and 
forms, especially perhaps for unusual diphthongs, and 
the possible history of the diphthong development 
where it can be ascertained. 

(e) identification of prominent foreign elements in the 

If we consider the question from the point of view of 
vocabulary, we find several distinct methods of approach. 
Dialect adoption of words from the cultural centre and 
perhaps consequent change of sound by analogy, which 
introduces once more the question of phonology is one 
aspect of the question. Dialect retention of words lost by 
the cultural centre, and reasons for this where they can be 
ascertained, are also important. Change in the semantic 
development of words found in both Standard English and 
the dialect, but with different meanings, is even more 
important. Finally there is perhaps the most important 
aspect of dialect study from the point of view of vocabulary, 


what may be called " local vocabulary ", often connected 
with basic occupations of the area, sometimes containing words 
which have never been in Standard English, and therefore 
of extreme importance, especially if foreign influence can be 
proved linguistically or historically. Trade terms are a fruitful 
field of study. All this is, of course, study on the lines of the 

In addition to phonology and vocabulary, there arises the 
question of stress, both sentence-stress, with which is allied 
intonation, and word-stress. My own feeling is that an 
investigation of a dialect should include a study of intonation, 
covering not only pitch, but actual voice-production. Many 
dialect areas have their own peculiar method of speech, and 
I know that to a person from the East Riding the speech of 
West Riding people is harsh and grating, and countryfolk, 
at any rate in the West Riding, usually speak more slowly 
than townspeople. Pitch is not always easy to differentiate, 
apart from exceptional cases, as, for example, the " singing " 
of the Tynesider. Word-stress is often an interesting feature 
of dialects, and many words are pronounced with change of 
stress, as the words [kDntre-an] and [agraveit] in the West 
Riding. The reasons for this change of stress, or it may be 
retention of original stress where Received Standard has 
changed, should be of interest, especially if it can be supported 
by historical evidence. 

A further problem which arises and this goes to the very 
root of the question is whether dialect areas do exist at all. 
Many arguments have been put forward within the last few 
years, some maintaining that dialect areas do exist, but many 
more denying their existence. Whatever may be the position 
on the Continent, there can be no doubt of the existence of 
dialect areas, with more or less sharply-defined boundaries, 
in this country. Examination of the modern Yorkshire 
dialects in general reveals the existence of a " Great Divide ", 
which may be defined roughly as follows : from Doncaster 
to the head of the Humber Estuary, then up the Ouse to 
its confluence with the Wharfe. along the Wharfe to 


Addingham, then due west to strike the Aire about Keighley 
or Skipton, and so across into Lancashire. North and east 
of this line the dialect differs in at least three important 
sounds from the dialect south and west of the line. Again, 
as another example of dialect areas, in the dialect of Calderdale 
in the West Biding there are at least two important sounds 
with very different pronunciation in the upper and lower 
parts of the valley, and the dividing line is quite sharp. 
Ellis divided the West Riding into nine separate dialect areas. 
The dialects in the West Riding are still divergent, though 
not to the same extent as in his time, thus providing a sharp 
contrast with the North and East Ridings, where one dialect 
is spread over a large area, but the reason for this difference 
is not far to seek. In the agricultural North and East Ridings 
there is continual change of population within the area, 
and often a great number of people migrate from district to 
district at the annual hirings. This constant inter-communica- 
tion has naturally produced a standard dialect in an area 
in which there are practically no natural boundaries. It has 
been suggested that dialect boundaries are not always topo- 
graphical, and the determining factors may be rather political 
and administrative than physical. There are certainly no 
natural boundaries in the case of Calderdale, and I know of 
no important political or administrative boundaries either. 
Further, the Pennines have not prevented what is apparently 
primarily a Lancashire characteristic the use of [0] or [5] for 
the definite article from penetrating into the upper valley of 
the Calder, but the lower valley has the regular Yorkshire 
form the " suspended T ". In this case the division is not 
quite the same as for the two sounds previously mentioned. 
The conditioning factors for dialect boundaries are perhaps 
the independent character of the dialect speakers, and, more 
important, means of inter-communication. In the area I have 
just mentioned there is quite definitely an independent 
attitude, and I believe some of the older people take a pride 
in the differences which their dialect shows, and certainly 
often refer to the " foreign " elements in the neighbouring 


dialects by imitating them when referring to people from 
those areas. For example, people from the lower valley 
refer to those of the upper valley as [jaisaidoz], because of 
the latters' pronunciation of the word " our ". (" Our side " 
means " our people ".) This independent attitude is often 
found among the wealthy manufacturers, who persist in 
and even take a pride in using dialect, though their womenfolk 
tend to use Received Standard, or a Northern form of it. 
So far as ease of inter-communication is concerned, in the 
West Riding the division of the land into dales resulted in 
the formation of separate communities which, until recently, 
have had no real need for inter-communication, and, as a result, 
people of one valley differ from those of the next in the 
pronunciation of some sounds, though they agree in the 
pronunciation of most. This difference may arise .even in 
the same valley, as in the case, just mentioned, of the upper 
and lower valleys of the Calder. Now that travel is so much 
easier, and young people often travel some ten or twenty 
miles each day to work, these differences are rapidly dis- 
appearing among the younger generation, and eventually 
we shall probably get a more or less uniform West Riding 

The question of dialect boundaries is more important for 
sounds than for words in this area, and if vocabulary alone 
were to be considered one would be inclined to agree with 
those who say that dialect boundaries do not exist, at any 
rate for such a small and comparatively self-contained area, 
but the statement is certainly not true for sounds, and needs 
to be modified to some extent even for vocabulary when one 
takes into account the specialised vocabulary of the trades 
of the area. 

To sum up on the problems dealt with so far, problems 
arising chiefly out of the differences between the Neo- 
grammarians and the Neo-linguists, the present state of 
dialect study, in this country at any rate, would suggest 
that all differences between the two schools should be regarded 
as of secondary importance, particularly if they are likely 


to hinder the collection of dialect material. It is much better 
to leave argument on principles, and get down to recording 
the dialect which still exists, before it is too late. The question 
of recording the dialects before they disappear is the one 
really urgent problem in this field. Once the raw material 
has been gathered, the secure foundation on which alone 
either school may base its theories, the method of treatment 
and the conclusions to be drawn from it may come later 
but the collection of the material cannot. If an investigator 
decides to work on the principles of the Neo-grammarians, 
does it matter very much what laws he formulates or what 
conclusions he draws ? The important thing is that he should 
collect the material, then the Neo-linguist may, if he likes, 
use the material and draw his own conclusions from it, or the 
Neo-grammarians may formulate laws from the material 
gathered by the Neo-linguist. The collection of the dialect 
is the main thing at the moment. 

Reference has been made to dialect publications and 
written dialect material in general, and attention called to 
the fact that it is extremely difficult to deal with this on 
phonological lines. In the case of the West Yorkshire dialects, 
with which I am most familiar, modern dialect literature 
dates mainly from about the last quarter of last century ; 
comparatively little of the Yorkshire dialect has survived 
from the eighteenth century, with the exception of one or 
two glossaries. Many local dialect publications appeared 
during the latter half of the nineteenth century, and the 
Yorkshire Dialect Society has published a fairly complete 
bibliography. Interest in these lies rather in the matter and 
vocabulary than in the accurate record of dialect sounds. 
Ellis remarked that they were " neither accurate enough nor 
local enough to be of service ". Apart from the fact that 
they may not really represent the local dialect, the lack of 
agreement in the spellings of similar words often makes it 
impossible to decide what sound the writer intends to represent. 
In an address to the Yorkshire Dialect Society in 1927 Mr. J. 
Fairfax Blakeborough referred to " the fearsome manner in 


which even some knowledgeable Yorkshire folk often write 
their dialect ". This problem is now being tackled, at least so 
far as the Yorkshire dialect is concerned, for the Yorkshire 
Dialect Society is at the moment engaged upon an attempt 
to formulate a standard orthography for all its dialect writers, 
and if this can be managed it would be a tremendous step 
forward from the point of view of the investigator of dialect 
phonology. One would imagine that with such a plentiful 
supply of literature as we now have written in the Yorkshire 
dialects, produced by people who speak the dialects, it would 
not be difficult to present a complete picture of the various 
dialects from the written material available. The main 
difficulty, as I have said, is that one can never be sure what 
sound the writer is trying to represent, and, to make matters 
worse, in many cases the writer may not be a native of the 
area, and so may make use of words or sounds from his own 
area which are not found in the area the dialect of which he 
purports to write. With this proviso, that we may find words 
not properly belonging to the area in question, these publica- 
tions can often be very useful from the point of view of 
vocabulary. So far as sounds are concerned, there is much 
more difficulty, particularly as regards orthography. Yet, 
in spite of what Ellis said, I am sure that some results can 
be achieved by an investigator who is really familiar with 
the dialect, as I hope to show by examples later in this paper. 
The last problem to be raised is that of the investigator 
himself, and the methods he is to use. The ideal observer is 
the native dialect speaker who has had the necessary training 
in phonetics to enable him to record with absolute accuracy 
all details of the existing pronunciation. A complete training 
in linguistics is not essential, and may even be a handicap 
if the observer brings to his task pre-conceived theories which 
may affect what he records. There can be no doubt that the 
observer who is able himself to use the dialect will obtain 
far more satisfactory results than the outside observer 
and I say this without in any way wishing to reflect upon 
dialect research carried out in this country by a few foreign 


scholars. The first stage in the decay of a dialect, that at 
which the speaker becomes dialect-conscious, has been reached 
in most of our dialects, and I have myself noticed a change 
come over the speech of a native when he converses with 
someone using Keceived Standard. If this is the case with 
the outside Englishman, one can imagine that the foreigner 
is likely to be still more handicapped. I know that the method 
of using an outside observer speaking the standard speech 
of the country has been used by many investigators, including 
Gillieron, though other investigators have in recent years 
insisted on their observers living for some considerable time 
in the area, but even this method does not entirely remove 
the difficulty. If the investigator is unable to cover the 
ground himself, the other method open to him is to obtain 
the records through some native of the area, and this he 
must do usually by means of a list of questions, which are 
to be put to the dialect speaker, and the answers recorded. 
The obvious difficulty is that if the dialect speaker is at all 
conscious of his dialect the results of such a " question and 
answer " method will not be a record of natural dialect, 
even if the chosen observer has the necessary training, which 
is not always the case. Ellis adopted this method for his 
phonological investigation of the dialects, and made some 
serious mistakes in the area with which I am familiar. Apart 
from his remarks on the particular area which I have investi- 
gated, and with which I shall deal later, the following two 
comments show how misleading such a method can be. Of 
Ellis's remarks on the Windhill area Wright says : "If his 
rendering of the dialect test of other dialect speakers is as 
inaccurate as that of the Windhill dialect, the value of these 
tests for phonetic and philological purposes is not very great," 
and it must be remembered that Wright really did know his 
own dialect. Again, in an address to the Yorkshire Dialect 
Society in 1903 the following remarks were made : "I have 
gone over a part of Mr. Ellis's work, to which I have referred 
extensively, along with a friend, who knows some of the 
dialects accurately, and he discovers in it many defects and 


errors. I myself can speak with confidence of at least one of 
these dialects, and I am bound to say that the representation 
of its various sounds is far from perfect." In quoting these 
two remarks, and commenting later on the work of Ellis in 
the Calderdale area, I wish to make it quite clear that what 
I have to say is not directed against Ellis himself, but against 
the method he used. In most cases the observer may not be 
fully-trained in his work and I think we should find great 
difficulty in obtaining for each area an observer who is not 
only a dialect speaker, but who is perfectly familiar with 
phonetics and linguistics generally and, as I have already 
shown, the method of stereotyped questions and answers 
makes it almost certain that we shall not have the dialect 
spoken naturally. In my opinion the only method is for 
the trained investigator to carry out the method of patient 
listening to the dialect speakers when they are mixing freely 
with one another, and speaking naturally. I have gathered 
most of my information in the bars of inns and at such 
gatherings as local football matches. In this way only can 
we get the real dialect under natural conditions, for unless 
the speakers are unconscious of the presence of the investigator 
there will be some awkwardness. 

We now come to consider what the investigator is to 
record. The mere presentation of a dialect in the form of 
an accurately-transcribed phonetic glossary is not sufficient. 
Words which are peculiar either in form or meaning must be 
noted and classified, and an attempt made to explain the 
apparently abnormal development. In addition, the dialect 
must be viewed as a living language, which has a history of 
its own, and the investigator must attempt to trace the laws 
of its internal development, isolate the influences which have 
in any way modified the dialect from outside, and examine 
the intensity of these upon the dialect. He must also examine 
the phonetic and grammatical structure of the dialect in 
every period for which adequate material is available, and, 
finally, the local boundaries of all the various sounds must 
be charted as accurately as possible. A reliable treatment 


of the phonology of the dialect is the investigator's first duty, 
and this must be based, first and foremost, upon an accurate 
analysis of the existing pronunciation, and, secondly, upon 
an examination of the spellings of earlier documents, in so 
far as these can be relied upon to reflect the current pro- 
nunciation of their period. 

In order to present an adequate record from the point 
of view of vocabulary the observer should record every word 
he hears which varies in any way from the usage of the 
literary language, and not merely record words which are 
archaic. A dialect is not like a dead language, with a fixed 
vocabulary and invariable rules of accidence and syntax. 
However strong the forces of conservatism may be and 
they are very strong in the case of dialects they cannot 
prevent the gradual decay and renewal which always go on 
side by side in a living language. Words are being lost rapidly, 
so rapidly that many in regular use at the end of last century 
are quite meaningless to the younger generation to-day, and, 
in order to present a complete historical record, such words 
should be included, where they can be authenticated. But, 
on the other hand, new words are being acquired even more 
rapidly, and it is probable that in fifty years' time such 
words as " celluloid ", " chromium ", and " garage ", now 
regularly used by many dialect speakers, will be quite as 
common in the dialect as " cloth ", " iron ", and " plough " 
now are. In addition, the admission of such words into the 
dialect vocabulary gives an excellent picture of the working 
of the forces of analogy. A typical example occurs in the word 
" chromium " mentioned above, which appears in the dialect 
as [kruomiom], the vowel of the first syllable having been 
diphthongized, by analogy with words such as [buon] bone. 
The dialect is rich in words which, as a result of the Industrial 
Revolution, have been borrowed at a comparatively late 
period, and in all these words the forces of analogy are seen 
at work. This working of analogy raises some fascinating 
points, and the particular example just quoted is interesting. 
Corresponding to Received Standard [ou] the dialect has 


two forms, [ua] and [DI], generally arising from two distinct 
sources in Middle English. New borrowings of words contain- 
ing this Keceived Standard vowel invariably go to [ua], no 
matter what the source of the original vowel. And some 
words which usually have [DI] are occasionally heard with 
[ua] now. What is the reason ? Is it that the [uo] forms are 
more common, and therefore have more influence, or is this 
diphthong more natural to the dialect, which seems to have 
a tendency to over-rounding ? The problem is fascinating, 
but its solution is far from easy. Kokeritz, in his account of 
the dialect of Suffolk, sums up the position so far as material 
to be sought is concerned when he says that the duty of the 
dialect investigator is "to paint a true and faithful picture 
of the dialect as now spoken, not to give an idealized and 
beautifully retouched photograph of the speech habits of 
very old people, to the exclusion of the younger generations. 
For it is the vacillation between the vernacular pronunciation 
on the one hand and Standard English on the other that 
produces the intermediate shades of sound which characterize 
the modern dialect and are of very great interest for its 
future history. Moreover, these variants may to some extent 
reflect the struggle for supremacy that must have been going 
on in Early New English between the dialects and the incipient 
Standard Language ". 

Having gathered this material, the investigator must now 
consider the conclusions to be drawn from it, and, possibly, 
the preparation of dialect maps. The first point has already 
been dealt with, and the second leads us to the question of 
dialect geography and the preparation of dialect maps in 
this country. Here we are far behind the Continent, at least 
that part of the Continent where the Romance languages 
prevail, and much remains to be done. Admittedly, English 
dialects have not been so thoroughly investigated as have 
those of the Romance languages, but much has been done, 
and there is no reason why, provided the necessary support 
is forthcoming, the remaining work should not be carried out 
quickly, before it is too late. We have, of course, the publica- 


tions of the English Dialect Society, covering a large part of 
the country, and there are also many individual studies, such 
as those of Ellis, previously mentioned, Wright (Windhill), 
Kjederqvist (Pewsey, Wilts), Hargreaves (Adlington), Hirst 
(Kendal), Kruisinga (West Somerset), Brilioth (Lorton), Klein 
(Stokesley), Cowling (Hackness), Reaney (Penrith), Haigh 
(Huddersfield), Kokeritz (Suffolk), Orton (South Durham), 
Lamprecht (South- West Yorkshire), and Miiller and Borgis 
(South-East Yorkshire and North Durham). If these could 
be examined, and the information they contain co-ordinated, 
it might be possible to produce atlases on the basis of both 
phonology and vocabulary. Obviously much needs still to 
be done, for many areas, some, such as boundary-areas, 
important, have not yet been covered, and presumably some 
of the works mentioned above would have to be brought 
up to date, for it would obviously be useless to include material 
gathered in one area in, say, 1880 in the same map as material 
gathered in 1940. I may add that the above list is purely 
by way of example, and is not necessarily complete. 

I have done some preliminary work of this nature myself, 
but here I speak at some disadvantage, for I am really familiar 
with only two or three of the South- West Yorkshire dialects, 
though I have some knowledge of certain Midland and Southern 
dialects also, so I shall base my remarks here on my own 
experiences in field-work up to date, and my own plans for 
a dialect-atlas for the West Riding of Yorkshire. In passing 
I may say that the dialect-atlas is only one part of the work 
I have in mind ; the chief part will be a glossary and a com- 
prehensive comparative grammar. 

The West Riding is a complex area from the dialect point 
of view. As I have said, Ellis divided the area into nine dialect- 
divisions, and it may be that this is a conservative estimate : 
I have heard the same number mentioned for the Huddersfield 
district alone. These West Riding dialects were originally 
all distinct, but urbanization of the country districts and 
ease of travel has broken down many of the old distinctions. 
Even then, some of the dialects still show important differences, 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. N 


especially in the remote country districts. In order to localize 
these differences I have compiled a list of words which are 
in common use in all the dialects of the area, and which 
cover all the principal sounds and combinations in Old and 
Middle English, from native, Romance, and Scandinavian 
sources, and I am now at work discovering how these words 
are pronounced by genuine dialect speakers in all parts of the 
West Riding, taking information as far as possible from 
villages and small towns, rather than from larger towns and 
cities, where pure dialect has largely ceased to exist, owing 
to admixture. This needs, of course, a tremendous number 
of contacts, and very fine sifting of material, especially in the 
areas close to the boundaries of different sound-variants, 
and I anticipate that it will take a considerable time. By this 
close investigation of every inhabited area the boundaries 
of any variant forms will be fixed, and dialect-maps can be 
prepared for each of the sounds. The investigation will also 
cover the more important points of accidence, such as the 
occurrence of " -en-plurals " in verb forms, and such general 
points as the form of the definite article, and the question 
of how much vocabulary and idiom is common to the whole 
area and how much is peculiar to particular dialects. I realize 
that this is not dialect-geography as conducted by Gillieron 
and his followers, but the area is so small that there is little 
scope for an atlas founded purely on vocabulary. 

Before going on to illustrate by reference to a particular 
dialect the points raised earlier, some account is perhaps 
necessary of my work on that dialect, since the remarks will 
be based on my own field-work. Any account of my study 
of West Riding dialects should, strictly speaking, go back to 
my childhood days, for I have heard the dialects spoken since 
then, and I lived in the area for the first twenty-seven years 
of my life, but my investigations really began in 1937, when 
it was suggested that I should make a detailed study of the 
dialect in my native area, Lower Calderdale, and present the 
conclusions as a thesis. Since this thesis was presented 
I have further developed my study of the Lower Calderdale 


dialect, with particular reference to the vocabulary and idiom 
of certain of the Towneley Plays, and also done some work on 
the neighbouring dialect of Upper Calderdale, in addition to 
the comparative grammar of the West Riding dialects upon 
which I am at present engaged. My work on the Lower 
Calderdale dialect is now more or less completed, so far as 
the investigation of a living dialect can ever be said to be 
completed. The investigation of the dialect of the upper 
valley has so far been limited to an attempt to define the 
dialect sounds, or the most important of them, of the middle 
eighteenth century, as shown in two contemporary records of 
widely-different character, and to examine them alongside 
the sounds of the present-day dialect. This work is still 
incomplete, but I hope eventually to make as thorough an 
investigation of the dialect of this area as I have done of the 
lower valley, though the material for the early period is 
perhaps not so abundant, nor so certain so far as locality 
is concerned. 

I have had the advantage of having heard the dialect, 
spoken for thirty years or more, and therefore the collection 
of forms has been greatly simplified, for I was perfectly 
familiar with many of them, and did not need to search for 
them. Over such a lengthy period many variant pronunciations 
have been heard, for, as will be seen in the description of 
the area itself, its peculiar geographical position renders it 
particularly liable to the influence of other dialects. I have 
tried to cover all types of dialect speakers in obtaining my 
material. Just as there are three generations of speakers, 
the old, the middle-aged, and children, so there are three 
distinct types of dialect, but the third tends to show greater 
divergence from the second than does the second from the 
first. During the course of my investigations I have paid 
particular attention to older speakers, people of from fifty 
to seventy years of age, as representing the least degenerate 
form of the dialect. The chief influences which tend to break 
down dialect are education, literary tradition, authority of 
the standard spoken language, and perhaps wireless speech 


Older people in the area are practically unaffected by any of 
these, and this is especially true in the country districts, 
where the purest form of dialect is spoken. Such older speakers 
use many words which are not now used by the second class, 
whose ages may be taken as between thirty and fifty, though 
the words may be quite intelligible to them. So far as they 
are concerned the decay in dialect is represented by loss of 
vocabulary, not by sound changes. They have been influenced 
by the earlier, and perhaps less systematized, efforts made 
by the schools to stamp out dialect. The effect of the influences 
is seen more clearly in the third group, who have had the 
benefit of more intensive education, and have managed to 
scramble up the first few rungs of the educational ladder, 
which leads to literary tradition and Keceived Standard 
pronunciation. As yet the result has been only to produce 
a bilingual population, even amongst those still at school, 
for in most cases the local form of Received Standard, carefully 
used in school and with strangers, is shed when these sur- 
roundings are left behind. On the other hand, many parents 
now attempt to impose some form of standard pronunciation 
on their children, owing to the fact that they have themselves 
become dialect-conscious, and so, as opportunities for the 
free use of dialect become less frequent, the true dialect will 
disappear. But for the time being there are undoubtedly three 
distinct types to study, and I am sure that each type should 
be recorded, as showing stages in the decay of dialect. 

Before dealing with the dialect itself, as illustration of the 
remarks made earlier, some account is necessary of the area, 
its boundaries, and its history, with some details of material 
available for the dialect investigator. Considering the West 
Riding as a whole, one can have no doubt of the antiquity 
of its records, and the area of Lower Calderdale, and, in 
particular, Dewsbury, Wakefield, and Thornhill, is rich in 
such records. The Parish Church of Dewsbury celebrated its 
thirteenth-hundredth anniversary in 1927, and legend tells 
that Paulinus preached there, on the banks of the Calder, 
in 627. Almost a quarter of the pre-Norman carved stones 


to be found in the West Riding are in the parish churches of 
Dewsbury and Thornhill. The presence of so many remains, 
many of which are Anglian and some carved in runic characters, 
points to communities of some size in the Anglo-Saxon period. 
The Wakefield Court Kolls of the thirteenth and fourteenth 
centuries present a fairly complete picture of the area at that 
time. The area covered by my investigation extends from 
Mirfield in the west to* Wakefield in the east, and includes all 
the towns and villages in the compact manufacturing unit 
known as the Heavy Woollen District, with its centre at 
Dewsbury. There are no natural boundaries within the area, 
occupying as it does the fairly- wide lower valley of the River 
Calder, and it is very easy to get from one part of the area 
to any other. The outlying villages are becoming more and 
more mere suburbs of the towns, and this tendency has been 
increased in recent years by the building of large municipal 
housing-estates in the agricultural areas surrounding the towns, 
so that a large urban area has grown up, and this is tending 
to destroy the finer shades of difference in pronunciation which 
formerly characterized the speech of different towns and 
villages. The district is in an interesting position from the 
dialect point of view, for it is situated rather like the hub of 
a wheel, with the other dialect-areas of the West Riding all 
round it, and, as these other dialect-areas are in close contact 
with it, the area is particularly liable to assimilate variant 
forms from these dialects, which makes the work of an 
investigator who is not perfectly familiar with the speech 
of the whole West Riding area extremely difficult. 

As regards material for the investigator in the early periods, 
there is not much of value in the very early period, for although 
the Rushworth Gloss almost certainly belongs to this area 
I feel that it is doubtful if it reflects any of the idiom of the 
area : indeed its very nature precludes the use of idiom. 
It also shows very little Scandinavian influence, and, to judge 
by present-day standards, the everyday speech of the people 
must have contained many more Scandinavian words than 
we find in that text. In the middle period we have a text, 


the Towneley Plays, which almost certainly belongs to the 
immediate neighbourhood, as may be seen from two or three 
probable local allusions. Certain of these plays have been 
distinguished from the rest by some critics as being perhaps 
of a particularly local nature, and it is my own opinion that 
a close study of these particular plays would throw light on 
idiom of the time which would correspond closely with modern 
dialect idiom, and I am engaged on such a study at the 
present time. This text, and other fifteenth-century texts 
which show some association with the area, contain many 
more Scandinavian words than we find in the early text, so 
perhaps the blending had been completed in the literary 
language by that time. At any rate the speech of the West 
Riding had assumed definite characteristics by the fifteenth 
century, and certain of the Towneley Plays probably reflect 
the idiom of the everyday speech of the people. The last 
period is one of decadence, and the replacement, so far as 
writings are concerned, by the literary language. In the 
seventeenth century there are two important poems, and also 
Ray's " Collection of Northern Words " (1674 and 1691), 
increased later by Thoresby in 1703, but these do not refer 
specifically to this area, although they give some idea of 
the form and vocabulary of the Yorkshire dialect as a whole, 
as does also the East Riding " Rural Economy of Yorkshire " 
(1641). We have an interesting pair of records from the 
eighteenth century : in 1775 the Rev. John Watson published 
" The History and Antiquities of the Parish of Halifax in 
Yorkshire ", and included in this volume is a chapter entitled 
" Remarks on the dialect of Halifax Parish ". The first part 
comprises seventeen " Rules for Pronuntiation ", and this 
is followed by a list of words which evidently struck the writer 
as being unusual either from the point of view of pronunciation, 
or because they were not in common use in other parts of 
the country. The " Rules for Pronuntiation " provide informa- 
tion on differences of sounds which are still to be found in 
the modern area, and Watson's descriptions of variations 
from the sounds of standard speech are borne out by two 


dialect letters which appeared in the " Halifax Union Journal " 
in 1759, and were reprinted in 1836 in "A Concise History of 
the Parish and Vicarage of Halifax in the County of York, 
by John Crabtree, Gent." The letters are the usual type of 
dialect writing, but I think they are important as showing 
certain evidence for a number of dialect sounds which are of 
interest in view of what we find in the modern dialect. Both 
these records refer to the upper valley of the Calder, but 
the two areas have many dialect features in common, and 
characteristics of the dialect of the lower valley are shown 
in this material. These two records appear as an appendix 
at the end of this article, and reference will be made to them 
in the course of the remarks on dialect phonology. Many 
local dialect publications appeared in the latter part of the 
nineteenth century, but, as I have already said, they are of 
interest rather from the point of view of matter and vocabulary 
than for their phonological value. Some information on 
phonological questions may be obtained from them, however, 
and illustrative words have been gathered from one publication, 
" The Dewsbre Back at Mooin Olmenac an T'West Riding 
Historical Calendar for t'year 1869," and also appear as an 
appendix. So far as can be ascertained from the form of words 
which appear repeatedly in the publications printed in the 
different towns of the area, there seems to have been little 
variation in pronunciation in the areas of Dewsbury, Wakefield, 
Batley, Morley, Mirfield, and Heckmondwike round about 
1870, but, as has already been pointed out, care must be 
exercised in attaching importance to such investigations, 
especially when one cannot be sure that the writer is a native 
of the area. 

I now come to an account of the main points of the 
phonology of the dialect, considered on the lines of what 
I have suggested the investigator should look for. Many 
points must, of course, be omitted in such a short account 
as can be given here, but I hope that, when my full account 
of the investigation comes to be published, all these will 
be treated at length. 


The West Riding is really a Midland area, or rather, as 
Ellis said, Eastern North Midland. My own feeling is that 
the dialect had originally more Northern characteristics than 
it has now, and that the Midland influence began to make itself 
felt at the time of the Industrial Revolution. This Midland 
influence, so noticeable south and west of the " Divide " 
previously mentioned, may be due to the influx of textile 
workers at the time of the Industrial Revolution, or even 
before. These came chiefly from the Midlands and Cheshire 
in the first place, and so mixed their Midland speech with 
the typically-Northern speech of the farming population, 
who probably spoke much as the inhabitants of the North 
and East Ridings speak to-day. These industrial workers were 
perhaps quicker- witted and more vigorous than the agricultural 
population, and so their speech became the predominant 
feature of the dialect of the area, in so far as it differed from 
the original Northern dialect. If an examination of the 
forms found in Watson and the two dialect letters do not 
show the Midland characteristics which are now present, 
then we may feel fairly sure that this is so. I am at present 
going through these records, dealing with each sound in 
detail, and hope to be able to clear up this point in the near 
future. But many Northern characteristics still remain, as, 
for example, the form [plu] where we should expect [plai], 
the forms [nit] night, [lit] light, [brit] bright, all purely 
Northern forms, alongside the Midland diphthongized forms 
[fert] fight, [rsit] right, and the preterites of the Old 
English Class I strong verbs, such as [reid] rode, [rerz] 
rose, and [rsit] wrote, which are again Northern. 

When we come to consider the dialect of Lower Calderdale 
alongside other Northern dialects we find many features that 
are common to all Northern dialects. The chief of these are : 

(1) The regular use of [u] where Received Standard has [A], 
as in [birta] butter, [dust] dust, [suk] suck. 

(2) The use of a vowel very near to Cardinal Vowel No. 4 
in native, Scandinavian, and Romance words alike, where 
Received Standard has [SB], 


(3) The use of [a] and [D] in the original short form before 
-s, -f, and -th, where Received Standard has lengthened the 
vowel. Examples are : [bras] brass, [kasj] castle, [kraft] 
craft, [ba0] bath, [pa0] path, [frost] frost, [lost] lost, 
[soft] soft, [broG] broth, [froG] froth. 

(4) The retention of [i] and [u], corresponding to the original 
short vowel, before consonant groups which have caused 
lengthening. There is some confusion in this group, and it 
is treated at greater length below. 

(5) The lack of [e:], for which the dialect always has [si], 
and the scarcity of [ou]. When the latter does occur the first 
element of the diphthong is more open than in Received 
Standard, and the second element is stronger and more 
rounded, so that it has almost the effect of a final -w. 

(6) The use of [u] where Received Standard has [u] in 
such words as [luk] look, [buk] book, [kuk] cook, and 
even, among older speakers, such a form as [wul] wool, and 
[pul] pull. (Cf. the form " poolers " in the second dialect 

(7) M.E. a remains unrounded after w-, as in [wando] 
wander, [swan] swan, [wat] what. M.E. a + r is similarly 
unrounded, as in [swa:0] rind, [wain] warn, [waip] warp. 

So far as sounds are concerned which are kept apart in 
the dialect, but have fallen together in Standard English, 
the two most important examples are to be found in Received 
Standard [i] and [ou]. 

Examination of the first sound reveals that in the dialect 
M.E. f has generally become [19], as in [than] clean, [dial] 
deal, and [hast] least, but the same vowel has sometimes 
become [ei], as in [blsitj] bleach, and [teitf] teach. M.E. 
< O.E. ea has developed to [19], as in [biam] beam, [siom] 
seam, fat, and [diaG] death, but M.E. which developed 
from O.E. e lengthened in an open syllable has usually become 
[si], as in [beid] bead, [sit] eat, and [meit] meat. There 
is a certain amount of confusion due to our finding [ei] where 
we should normally, according to the regular dialect develop- 
ment, expect [19], and I can only put this down to the workings 


of analogy, though I realize that this is not a satisfactory 
explanation, but it is at least interesting to find the dialect 
keeping apart, and apparently in a fairly regular manner, 
sounds which have fallen together in Standard English. This 
sound is apparently the one referred to by Watson in the 
first part of his Rule 3d (see Appendix A), and the words 
" tea " and " flea " still have the pronunciation he gives. 
There is only one certain confirmation in the dialect letters 
(see Appendix B), the form " deeol " for " deal ", but we 
have definite evidence for this sound in dialect publications, 
for there can, to my mind, be no doubt that this diphthong 
is indicated when we find such spellings as " breeath "- 
breath, " dreeaded " dreaded, " steeam " steam, " deead " 
dead, alongside such forms as " eit " eat, " meit " meat, 
" speik " speak, " steil " steal, " weiver " weaver. (See 
Appendix C, sections f and g.) Perhaps the most interesting 
word in this group is " meal ", which has the pronunciation 
[miel] meal, repast, but [meil] ground grain, as in [uatmsil] 

M.E. Q < O.E. a, a development found south of the Humber, 
and therefore perhaps due to Midland influence, has regularly 
become [ua] in the dialect, as in [bruad] broad, [buan] bone, 
[gruan] groan, [duaf] dough. This is an example of over- 
rounding and diphthongization, and it is difficult to know 
which came first, though eighteenth and nineteenth century 
spellings with " -oa- " may perhaps suggest that the sound 
was first diphthongized and then over-rounded. Later the 
over-rounding was carried to the final stage, and we find such 
forms as [wum] home, and [WD!] whole, common in the 
modern dialect. It is worthy of note that Watson does not 
mention this sound, except perhaps in the form " nooa " 
(Rule 3d), and I think it reasonably safe to infer that the 
sound was not then found in his dialect, or he would surely 
have mentioned it. Indeed in his Rule 2d he excepts words 
such as " goat " and " boat " from that Rule without any 
suggestion that they have an unusual pronunciation. There 
is no indication of the sound in the dialect letters either. 


On the other hand, we have again, I think, definite evidence 
of the sound in some spellings in dialect publications of the 
nineteenth century, as " booat " boat, " dooaf " dough, 
" looads " loads, " rooad " road (see Appendix C section a), 
alongside " groape " grope, and " roape " rope, which 
may possibly represent the diphthong before over-rounding 
took place. The whole position suggests to me that this 
Midland influence is a direct result of the influx of Midland 
workers during the Industrial Revolution, though it is not 
possible to be certain in the absence of information about 
the sound in the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. 

On the other hand M.E. g < O.E. o lengthened in an 
open syllable has become [DI] in the dialect, as in [foil] foal, 
[kuil] coal, [DI!] hole. There are 'numerous forms which 
have the diphthong [ua], but in most cases I think that this 
can be traced to the influence of other dialects around the 
area, and the general development is certainly to [DI]. This 
is apparently the sound to which Watson refers in his Rule 2d, 
although the dialect letters have only one form, " coyt " 
coat, which bears out this Rule. It will be seen that in this 
Rule Watson excepts words such as " boat " and " goat ", 
which come under the type dealt with above. His exceptions 
are due to the fact that he did not realize that all his examples 
did not arise from the same sound in Old English : the 
majority of them are developed from O.E. a. The modern 
dialect confirms Watson's examples, with the exception of 
those just mentioned, and the form " noite " (and also 
" notice " in the dialect letters). In these two forms the 
modern dialect has [uo]. In his Rule 10th Watson mentions 
other examples of this sound in " cloise " and " loise ", 
and here his remarks are confirmed by the dialect letters, 
as in " loize ", and the modern dialect also agrees, but there 
are many examples of analogical levelling in this class of 
words. The occurrence of the sound in the modern dialect 
is again proved by spellings in dialect publications, such as 
" coil "coal, " hoyle "hole, " cloise " olose, field, 
" throit " throat. (See Appendix C section b.) 


One particular dialect characteristic should be mentioned 
here, though it is not a development from M.E. Q. In the 
preterite singular and plural of Old English Class I strong 
verbs the usual dialect form is [e:]. This is the normal dialect 
development of M.E. a, and suggests that this Northern 
characteristic remained in the dialect in this case only. It 
will be noted that Watson excepted these forms in his Rule 2d, 
and a form " rade " found in a dialect publication (see 
Appendix C section c) bears out this sound in the modern 

An interesting variant from Received Standard is found 
in the development of M.E. o, which has regularly become 
[ui] in the dialect, as in [spurn] spoon, [fuit] foot, [sum] 
soon, [guis] goose. Watson deals with this sound at some 
length in his Rule 1st, and the modern dialect agrees in almost 
all the forms which Watson gives, with the probable exception 
of " booik ", which I have never heard, and the forms 
" blooid ", " hooid ", and " mooid " are not very common 
except among very old dialect speakers. The Rule is borne 
out by a few spellings in the dialect letters, and his note on 
the variation in the western parts of the parish is borne out 
by forms such as " shoiters " and " soyn ". So far as I have 
been able to ascertain this latter sound is not now heard 
in the dialect, but it has been merged in the [ui]-form, apart 
from one possible form [fort] = shoot (?), used of a thread 
in a fabric. Spellings in dialect publications which may be 
taken as evidence of this sound include " blooidshed ", 
" flooid ", " gooise ", " mooin ", and the place-name " Sooit- 
hill ". (See Appendix C section d.) The reason for this change 
is not quite clear, but Northern Middle English often wrote 
" oi " or " oy " for o, and it may be that this is merely a 
spelling pronunciation. In this case such forms as " shorter " 
and " soyn " may represent an earlier form, and the develop- 
ment of [DI] to [ui] may be another example in the dialect 
of the process of over-rounding mentioned above. 

An interesting survival of an earlier pronunciation is to 
be found in the dialect pronunciation of words containing 


M.E. er/ar from Romance sources. In the case of M.E. er 
we find that the sound has often remained [a:], as in [jaibz] 
herbs, and [saivnt] servant. But perhaps the most interesting 
development is that of M.E. ar, and the variation of this 
sound in certain words. The diphthong [ea] is quite common, 
as in [kweat] quart, [kead] card, [peak] park, alongside 
equally common forms with [a:], as [baign] bargain, [gaidm] 
garden, [maikit] market, and [skailit] scarlet. This 
alternation of [ai] and [ea] seems to suggest that the original 
sound was [a:], and that this was later raised and 
diphthongized. The normal development of M.E. ar in both 
native and Romance words is to [a:], but Romance words 
show a greater tendency to [ea] than do native words. Wright, 
in his treatment of this sound in his " Dialect of Windhill ", 
considered that the two sounds differed in Middle English. 
He quotes only [ea] for the Romance words in the Windhill 
dialect, Cowling has both [a:] and [ea] for the dialect of 
Hackness, and Reaney quotes only [a:]-forms for the dialect 
of Penrith in Cumberland, as does Brilioth for the district 
of Lorton in the same area. Cowling considered that the 
[eej-forms were borrowed from the fashionable language in 
the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century. On the other 
hand, we can show from the evidence of the two dialect letters 
that M.E. u, which is heard as [a:] in the dialect of Lower 
Calderdale, had become [ea] in Upper Calderdale, and it may 
be that this diphthong had passed through the intermediate 
stage which we still find in the lower valley, and I think that 
there may be some connection between the development of 
these two sounds. 

In the development of M.E. u we get divergence between 
the dialects of the upper and lower valleys. In the lower 
valley the sound has regularly become [a:], and this is one 
of the characteristics of the dialect. This sound is quite 
naturally not mentioned by Watson, nor is it found in the 
dialect letters, for both of these deal with the upper valley. 
Examples of this sound are : [ais] house, [tain] town, 
[ka:] cow, [tlait] cloth, clout. Numerous examples of 


spellings which illustrate this sound are to be found in the 
dialect publications, and when one comes across such forms 
as " braahn " brown, " caah " cow, " craahd " crowd, 
" daahn " down, and many others, one can, I think, take 
it that [a:] is intended, in spite of Ellis's inference referred to 
below. In the upper valley, as the two letters clearly show, 
the dialect has developed this sound to either [sa] or [lu], 
the former diphthong appearing regularly in the Halifax 
letter, and the latter in the Sowerby Bridge letter. Both 
these forms were recorded by Ellis, who said that [lu] was 
the older form, but that [ea] was the dominant form. The 
latter is now the regular form for both Halifax and 
Huddersfield, but I believe that the south-western area, 
around Sowerby Bridge, still has traces of the former sound. 
In connection with this sound one must question the con- 
clusions of Ellis. He said that the lower valley around 
Dewsbury had [sa], as against [a:] in Leeds and Wakefield, 
two places further east. " The Dewsbre Back at Mooin 
Olmenac an' T'West Biding Calendar for t'year 1869 " has 
" hahce "house, " aht "out, " rahnd "round, " abaht " 
about, which, to my mind, proves that the dialect had 
[ai] in 1869. I have not been able to find any dialect speaker 
in the lower valley who uses this sound, which is, however, 
recognized as a characteristic of the Huddersfield and Halifax 
dialects, and I have heard speakers from the lower valley 
use this diphthong when they were consciously imitating 
men from the upper valley. So far as this particular sound is 
concerned, and the statement of Ellis that Dewsbury "is 
most nearly related to Halifax ", Haigh, who has compiled 
a glossary of the Huddersfield dialect, and who is familiar 
with the West Riding dialects, speaking to the Yorkshire 
Dialect Society in 1926, said : " Of these South Yorkshire 
dialects the most closely related in Grammar, Vocabulary, 
and Pronunciation to that of Huddersfield are, I think, first 
Halifax, then Eotherham and Sheffield. The variations are, 
of course, chiefly in pronunciation, and these begin to be 
especially noticeable on going north-east towards Dewsbury, 


where within five or six miles the dialect vowel development 
from O.E. u, for example, changes from that of [eo] in our 
dialect to [ah] beyond Ravensthorpe." This remark of a man 
who is perfectly familiar with the dialects is quoted at some 
length for three reasons : first, to show how dangerous is the 
method of investigation adopted by Ellis, secondly, to show 
that there is no doubt whatsoever of sharply-defined dialect- 
boundaries in the area, and, thirdly, to stress once again 
that these boundaries, as Haigh says, are chiefly a matter of 
pronunciation, and not of vocabulary. 

Another interesting point in connection with the phonology 
of the dialect is one which I am at present investigating in 
greater detail than can be set out here : it is the question of 
what light the dialects can throw on the lengthening of short 
vowels before consonant-groups which are supposed to have 
regularly caused lengthening. Many of the examples which 
are usually quoted as illustrating this change have the short 
vowel in the dialects, and it does not seem reasonable to 
assume that all these vowels were first lengthened and then 
shortened again. It is usually extremely difficult to obtain 
evidence on this point from spellings, as we shall have, for 
example, the spelling " find " whether the pronunciation is 
[famd] or [fmd], although a form " finnd " which I have seen 
in an edition of " The Clock Almanack " seems conclusive. 
But acquaintance with dialect-speakers soon shows that the 
short vowel is usual. We do, however, get absolute confirma- 
tion of this short vowel at a fairly early date in Watson's 
Rule llth, where he mentions two vowels as being short. 
On the other hand, there is one certain form in the dialect 
letters " foend " which cannot represent anything but the 
long vowel, for the dialect of the upper valley has regularly 
[aa] or [oa] where the lower valley has [ai]. The evidence of 
dialect spellings, apart from the form " finnd " just quoted, 
is largely negative, for we shall have " find " whether the 
pronunciation is [famd] or [find], but we may get some 
help in the Huddersfield-Halifax area, where [ai] is regularly 
[aa] or even [oa], as is shown by forms in the dialect letters 


such as " whoel" while, " laekt "liked, "woef" wife, 
" besaed "beside, " taem " time, " whoet "white, etc. 
So when we come across the form " foend " there can be no 
doubt of the long vowel, but, on the other hand, if such forms 
are sporadic, it might suggest that the short vowel is the 
usual form. The presence of these spellings in any number 
proves a lengthened vowel, the absence only suggests the short 
vowel. Ellis mentions many areas in the North where " i " 
has remained short before -nd, and spellings such as " bun " 
bound, " fun " found, and" pund " pound in dialect publica- 
tions prove a short vowel for O.E. u also. Yet there is some 
confusion in the dialects in respect of this change, for " pound " 
meaning " unit of weight " has the regular pronunciation 
[pund], whereas when it has the meaning " unit of money " 
it has the pronunciation [paind]. Similarly " blind " as 
a noun may have the long or short vowel : if the meaning is 
" window-covering " the pronunciation is [blaind], but if 
it has the meaning of " trap " or " deceit " then it has the 
short vowel, and as an adjective it has the short vowel 
regularly. Points such as this would provide material for the 
speculations of the Neo-linguists, for here there seems to be 
definite evidence of change of sound in order to stress difference 
of meaning. 

The question of the dialect development of diphthongs 
from an original " o " when followed by a back spirant is too 
involved to deal with in a short account, but it can be shown 
that the dialect does keep apart to a marked extent diphthongs 
developed respectively from M.E. QU and M.E. ou, the former 
regularly going to [o] and the latter to [DU], though it is not 
always easy to prove this from evidence of spelling, and 
there are a few examples of confusion, perhaps due again to 
analogy. The words " ought " and " nought ", mentioned by 
Watson in his Rule 9th, have the sound [DU]. Watson makes 
no mention of an unusual vowel sound, but his remark on 
" fetching the sound out of the throat ", which can only 
mean the retention of the spirant, is at first sight rather 
astonishing. One would not expect the spirant to have 


remained so long, even in the dialects, in a North Midland 
area, for it was already being lost at the time the Towneley 
Plays were written. At the same time, there are two forms in 
the dialect letters which seem to bear out his statement that 
the spirant was pronounced in the dialect at that time : 
some of the forms with the spelling -gh- may be due to the 
influence of the literary language, but such an explanation 
does not hold good for the two forms " saghim " saw him, 
and " saghit " saw it. The problem needs to be discussed 
at greater length, with more illustration : at the moment it 
will suffice to say that, whatever the pronunciation may 
have been in the eighteenth century, the modern dialect has 
in general no spirant-sound, though perhaps it may occasionally 
be heard among very old speakers in outlying districts. 

One last point I would like to mention, as proving dialect 
boundaries, is the use of the definite article. The regular form 
in Lancashire is [0] or [6], and this is found fairly regularly 
in the Halifax and Huddersfield areas, but the Yorkshire 
form with the " suspended-T " is the regular form in Dewsbury 
and in the lower valley. Examining the dialect letters we find 
that the Halifax letter has the [6] form, but the Sowerby 
Bridge letter has numerous forms with the " suspended-T " : 
This is rather unusual, as the latter area is further west, and 
is in closer contact with Lancashire. I think the [0] form is 
more usual there now, but it is very interesting to find the 
two variant forms recorded at such an early date. Ellis 
recorded the variation, saying that the " suspended-T " was 
rare, and that [0] was the usual form for the Halifax area 
in his time. 

The verbal plural in -en is found reflected in the dialect 
letters, though not mentioned by Watson, and Ellis, writing 
of Dewsbury, says, "this group in many respects greatly 
resembles the adjoining parts of Lancashire, and has parti- 
cularly the verbal plural in -en, the article [th] occasionally ..." 
I have not been able to trace any example of the former 
in the Lower Calderdale area, and the form [0] is never used. 
The Rev. W. E. Bryanston, speaking to the Yorkshire Dialect 

PHILO. TRANS. 1945. O 


Society on the Denby Dale dialect, said : "In Denby Dale 
I never heard the verbal plural in -en, though [0] for the 
definite article crops up now and then " ; and Denby Dale 
is further west than Dewsbury. The whole problem of these 
variant forms of the definite article, and the sharp division 
into two distinct areas, is most fascinating, and would repay 
detailed study. 

My remarks so far have been confined to those points to 
which it was earlier suggested that the dialect investigator 
should pay particular attention. But Watson's " Rules for 
Pronunciation " (Appendix A), and the two dialect letters 
(Appendix B) call for further comments. Watson's work was 
used by Wright in the compilation of his English Dialect 
Dictionary, but he does not seem to have been aware of the 
letters, although Ellis ("On Early English Pronunciation," 
pt. v, p. 382) mentions that his attention had been called 
to them. Ellis says that " the spelling by no means gives 
the sound with certainty " and he contented himself with 
compiling from them a short word-list, and making sundry 
comments on the pronunciation of the sounds. Yet a close 
comparison of these two sources, based more on agreements 
than on differences, gives quite a comprehensive picture of 
the chief sounds in the dialect of the area at the time, and 
this, checked by reference to the account of the dialect as 
given by Ellis in his time, and considered alongside the sounds 
of the dialect as it is spoken to-day by the older inhabitants 
of the area, should provide a sufficiently accurate description 
not only of the sounds of the dialect in the mid-eighteenth 
century, but also of the phonological development since then, 
by showing which dialect sounds were in use at that time, 
and which have changed since then. I have already completed 
much of this investigation, and hope to present at an early 
date a detailed account of the development of the various 
dialect sounds from their respective Middle English sources, 
but in the meantime some account of the more important 
conclusions already reached may establish the value of the 
material. The method I have adopted is to take first the 



" Rules " of Watson, and check them by reference to the 
letters, and then to examine the letters in order to discover 
dialect sounds which are not mentioned by Watson, verifying 
both sets of conclusions by reference to the modern dialect. 

Rule 1st has already been dealt with in detail, as have 
also ftule 2d and Rule 3d. 

" Loin," mentioned in Rule 4th, is probably the only word 
which Watson could have adduced in this group. It is found 
in the letters as " loin " and " loyn ", and this agrees with 
the modern pronunciation, but the word is almost certainly 
derived from a form having " -o- " in Middle English (cf. 
Towneley Plays " lonys," and Promptorium Parvulorum 
" loyn "). 

In Rule 5th it seems to be suggested that the final syllable 
is strengthened. This does not take place in the modern 
dialect in such words as Watson mentions in his list, and the 
dialect letters do not help here, though perhaps one would 
not expect much help on the subject of final unstressed 
syllables from a source such as the letters. On the other 
hand the dialect does strengthen the final unstressed syllable 
under certain conditions, especially before final -1, -n, and -t. 
Examples in the modern dialect are [bundil] bundle, [fund] 
funnel, [ribm] ribbon, [wag in] wagon, [karrt] carrot, and 
the form " Chappil " in the first letter suggests that this was 
also the case in the eighteenth century. 

Watson's Rule 6th is not confirmed by any forms in the 
letters, though it is confirmed in the main by the modern 
dialect. Yet this sound is gradually disappearing except in 
certain words, and I do not think that the unpalatalized 
sound is nearly so common in the dialect as it was formerly. 
Examples of such a consonant where Received Standard has 
[J] are very scarce now. The diphthong of the example 
" peark " in this Rule is interesting, for this is the pronun- 
ciation in the modern dialect, and Watson's comment shows 
that the diphthongization of " e -f- r " is at least as old as 
the mid-eighteenth century. 

Rule 7th is rather confusing, for it treats of a number of 


sounds which are not connected phonologically. None of 
these sounds are confirmed in the letters. The word " pear " 
is pronounced in the modern dialect as Watson records it, 
but his forms for " a + 1 " are not now found, or, if they are, 
are extremely rare. The form " sware " in the first letter is 
contrary to Watson, but the modern dialect pronunciation 
[swia] bears him out. It is interesting to notice that the form 
" after ", chosen as a model by Watson, is pronounced [efta] 
in the modern dialect, a*hd was probably so pronounced in 
the dialect in his time. Watson's forms fig] and [igii)] are 
confirmed by the modern dialect, but the place-name Hanging 
Heaton has the normal Received Standard vowel. 

Rule 8th is confirmed by one or two spellings in the letters 
such as " rang " and " imang ", and also in certain cases 
by the modern dialect, although the change is perhaps not 
so widespread in the modern dialect as in the dialect of his 
time. It is not found, for example, so far as I have been able 
to discover, in " sang " and " lang " now, except perhaps 
among old countrymen. 

Rule 9th, Rule 10th, and Rule llth have already been 
dealt with. 

In commenting upon Rule 12th we may perhaps consider 
Ellis's statement that he found " [uu] she, more or less used, 
[shuu], the general South Yorkshire form also occurring". 
The Rev. W. E. Bryanston, in the address to the Yorkshire 
Dialect Society previously mentioned, said that he had never 
heard the form [hoo] meaning " she ". Watson records the 
form [Ju], yet one of the letters has " oo ", which confirms 
what Ellis said. As he said that [uu] was dying out in his time, 
it may be that it was already beginning to give way to [Ju] 
in the eighteenth century, and it may even be that the 
difference in dates between the letters and Watson's account 
may account for the difference. 

Rule 13th is interesting not so much from the point of 
view of the vowel sound as in the fact that it seems to indicate 
that there was no loss of the consonant, and that no 
diphthongization had taken place. The modern dialect has 



lost the consonant, and has apparently developed from a 
diphthongized form. But forms such as " weeld ", " wold ", 
" itld " in the dialect letters seem to bear out Watson. In 
spite of the form " weed " in the letters I do not think that 
the forms with the consonant are due to the influence of 
standard spelling, but I incline to the view that Watson 
may have been right, and the consonant may have been 
pronounced, though it is an unusual form. The word " uphold " 
still has variant forms in the modern dialects, with the 
form [upod] very common, although [upuud] is frequently 

In connection with the remark made under Rule 14th I am 
inclined to think that Watson may have mistaken the sound 
he heard here, and that it may have been [^s]. This would 
be confirmed by such spellings in the dialect letters as 
" seighs ", " Halifeighs ", and " Halifaghs ", but the form 
" neist " in the first dialect letter still has to be explained. 
If this should be the sound, then we might perhaps expect 
an untrained ear to confuse [-fe^ 8 ] an d [-feis] in such a form 
as " Halifeighs ". On the other hand I have seen the place- 
name Kexborough as " Keisborough " in an old map. If 
the sound were really [^s] then it bears out in part Rule 9th, 
so far as the pronunciation of the spirant is concerned. 

Rule 15th calls for no particular comment so far as the 
contracted forms are concerned, for they are to be expected 
in colloquial speech, though the consonant changes, especially 
in the form " 1st ", call for more detailed treatment than can 
be given here. Watson's form " fok " is confirmed by a similar 
spelling in the letters, alongside the normal " folk ", but 
the modern dialect form [fouk] has obviously developed 
from a form with the diphthong. 

There are no spellings in the dialect letters confirming the 
last two Rules, though the modern dialect bears them out. 
The first remark may perhaps be connected with the change 
from [d] to [5] found in the modern dialect, as in [u5azfild] 
Huddersfield. There are no letters transposed in the dialect 
letters, but the dialect has one or two forms, such as [gs ? n] 


grin, and [skrimich;] scrimmage, scrummage, which is 
perhaps a form of " skirmish ". 

On the other hand, the letters show several peculiarities 
which one would expect Watson to have noticed, as they show 
wide divergence from Received Standard pronunciation. 
Only the most important of these can be mentioned here. 
The most outstanding is the clear way in which the two 
letters show the development from M.E. u, which appears 
regularly as [ea] in the Halifax letter, and as [lu] in the 
Sowerby Bridge letter. This distinction is still to be found 
to some extent in the modern dialects of the two areas. This 
difference in variants from the normal development has 
already been treated at some length, and it is enough to 
repeat now that Ellis found both forms in his time, that he 
thought [lu] to be the older form, although [ee] was the 
dominant form, and that in general the modern dialect now 
has [ea], though the south-western area still has traces of the 
former sound. 

Another peculiarity, found in the first letter, the appearance 
of Received Standard [ai] as [09], is found only slightly 
modified, if at all, in the modern dialect. Examples in the 
letters include : " whoel "while, " woef "wife, " foend "- 
find, " loek " like, with variant spellings such as " besaed " 
beside, " taem "time, " laekt "liked. The second letter 
has no forms of this kind, but apparently records the normal 
[ai] diphthong. The " ae- " spellings may represent [eo], 
and in that case may show a development from a form [tarn], 
with perhaps some trace of diphthongization. The modern 
pronunciation is, for example, [tarn], with perhaps some 
diphthongization. The form " cro " cry, perhaps shows 
this development towards [a]. Ellis recorded these " ae " 
forms as not being the expected type. 

The sound indicated by the spelling " ei " in the first letter 
is not clear, for it is used in forms such as " meister " master, 
" thei " they, " awei " away, " sei " say, where the 
modern dialect has [e:], and I am not satisfied that [ei] is 
indicated here, especially as " Maister " is found alongside 


" meister ". The second letter has " ai ", and I rather think 
that the pure vowel [e:] is indicated by " ai " or " ei " in 
the first letter, though " reight " Bright, certainly has the 
pronunciation [reit] in the modern dialect. 

The regular occurrence of the spelling " ur " in forms such 
as " thurte " thirty, " surr " sir, " furst " first, suggests 
that a sound peculiar to the dialect is indicated (Watson 
perhaps refers to this particular sound in his Rule 6th, in the 
alternative form " burk ", after giving " birk "), and the 
modern dialect has a sound between [D] and [3-] for this 
combination, whether arising from earlier -er-, -ir-, -or-, or 
-UT-. The development is by no means clear, but it may perhaps 
be connected by means of spelling pronunciation with such 
forms as " norse " nurse ; (cf. Sir Gawayne and the Grene 
Knight). The modern pronunciation of this word is between 
[nos] and [na-s], and nearer the former. The pronunciation 
is so near to [D] that for many years I was under the impression 
that [Jip tods] sheep turds, was intended to be " sheep tods ", 
and I think many young people use the term under that 

Another variation found in the letters is the use of the 
short vowel, so common in the Northern dialects, in such 
forms as " mak " here meaning " kind ", " takken " take 
(present tense, plural), " tackint " taking it. An interesting 
variant of this sound is heard occasionally in some of the 
villages, where one may hear [me:] make, and this may 
be the sound represented by " ma " at the end of the second 

The first letter is unusual for the large number of weakened 
vowel forms, especially in a final position. The question of 
weakening of vowels, and also the strengthening in certain 
positions, is one requiring detailed study so far as Northern 
dialects are concerned. Perhaps material such as this may 
provide the missing information as to the development in the 
Early Modern period. 

As regards Accidence the most interesting point is the 
occurrence of the -en plural in verb-forms of the present tense. 


This is not so common in the modern dialect as in the first 
letter. The form " teld " told, is the common form in the 
modern dialect, as is also the form " speld ". The use of an 
inflected form with a plural subject, as in " TCuntre Meisters 
runs awei wit " and " som fok calls " is typical of the modern 

There are many other points which could be discussed with 
reference to the phonology of the dialect, but I have tried 
to keep to the particular points mentioned earlier, and to the 
most important points arising in the eighteenth century 
material. I hope, however, that sufficient has been said to 
show that there is much to be said for a purely phonological 
investigation of a dialect, once the raw material has been 
gathered together. And even then this is only one aspect of 
the investigation. Much might be said about the peculiarities 
of dialect vocabulary, and changes in semantic development, 
while the question of idiom alone would require more space, 
if it were to be treated adequately, than has been devoted 
here to phonological questions. 

Finally, and very briefly, mention may perhaps be made 
of the opportunities for dialect study in this country. On 
the Continent University Readerships in Dialect Study have 
been established, but in this country the position is not so 
good, and I think that with greater encouragement, and 
better opportunities for publication of material once it has 
been gathered, much more would be done than has been done 
so far. 


Remarks on the Dialect of Halifax Parish. Rules for 

Rule 1st. After oo add an i, pronouncing brisk, which will 
give the usual sound in the following monosyllables : For 
soon, sooin ; for noon, nooin ; goose, gooise ; fool, fooil ; 
tool, tooil ; cool, cooil ; hood, hooid ; mood, mooid ; moon, 
mooin ; noon, nooin ; rood, rooid ; spoon, spooin ; school, 


schooil ; blood, blooid ; book, booik ; and others. Also 
plural nouns, as for boots, booits ; roots, rooits ; etc., except 
wood, and perhaps a very few more words of the like sort. 
(In some parts of the parish, especially westward, oo are 
pronounced as oi, as foit for foot, etc.) Words of two syllables 
come also under this rule, as cooisin for cousin. Also shooin 
for shoes. 

Rule 2d. Some few words ending in ote, are pronounced 
as if they ended in oite, as noite for note. This seems to be 
confined to substantives ; verbs of the preter tenses, such 
as wrote, bote, etc., do not fall under it. To this rule also 
belong words which contain the letters oat, as for coat, coit ; 
for oats, oits ; for broach, they also say broich. To these, 
indeed, there are several exceptions, such as boat, goat, etc. 
To this rule also belong such words as end in ole and oal, 
as for foal, foil ; coal, coil ; hole, hoil ; soal, soil ; etc. , 
except dole, mole, pole, sole. 

Rule 3d. Such words as tea, flea, and yea, are sounded as 
if they were composed of two syllables ; and the negative 
particle no, as nooa. 

Rule 4th. Lane is pronounced as loin, but few, if any 
more words of this sort are subject to the like change. 

Rule 5th. The latter syllable in the words bacon, button, 
glutton, mutton, and such like, are sounded open and full, 
contrary to the custom of most other places. 

Rule 6th. Words ending in ch, are pronounced as if they 
ended in k, as birk for birch, benk for bench, kirk for church, 
ick for itch, pick for pitch, thack for thatch, perk for perch. 
Some for birch say burk, and for perch, peark. Exceptions 
to this rule are, catch, hatch, match, patch, watch, etc. They 
also say kist for chest. Words ending in sh are the same, as 
busk for bush. 

Rule 7th. The letter a, in the word altar, almost, exalt, 
halt, salt, etc., is pronounced as in the word after, or the 
Latin word altus ; not, as is the custom in most places, like 


the diphthong au. In the word pear it is sounded like e, as 
if it was peer. In the words hanging and hang, it is sometimes 
used as an i, hinging and hing. And in the word press it is 
substituted into the room of the e, and pronounced prass. 
Lastly, in salmon and gammon, it is used as au, viz. saumon 
and gaumon. 

Rule 8th. The letter o is frequently changed into a, as 
belangs for belongs, lang for long, sang for song, tangs for 
tongs, warse for